(FROM STEPHANIE: You may or may not know this, but as part of the work I do with Mark DeVries’ company, Ministry Architects, I head up their Small Church division. I have three other team members and once a month, I’d like to feature them in a blog. So here is one from Brent Parker, my fellow Texan, who serves in a small church.)
ROLLIN DOWN A BACK ROAD
Last weekend, as I drove down one of the many country backroads in northeast Texas, trying to make good time as I traveled from one place to the next, I was reminded of how these road-trips resemble a couple of the best and worst experiences I’ve had working in a smaller church youth ministry. I wonder if you have run into either of these situations…
Where is the next passing lane You are rolling along at your preferred pace, and then you find yourself slamming on the brakes to begin the creeping along with the slow driver in front of you. Don’t they realize you have places to be? You look around them to see if you can pass, but there seems to be an endless stream of traffic coming from the other direction. You’re stuck! Ever been stuck behind a slow-moving staff member who doesn’t work at your pace? Ever found your church membership stuck in its pre-technological age meandering? Ever began tapping your fingers on the steering wheel, wishing the person in the way of your progress would move over and let you by?
Look at those bluebonnets! Sometimes we are that driver who has lost track of time and has become engrossed in the beauty of the wildflowers or the fields of grain waving in the breeze. We have been moving right along in our ministries, trying to take in the beauty of God’s presence, only to have another persons agenda come flying up onto our rear bumper. You ever find yourself wondering why they can’t just slow down and enjoy the drive? Why do these parents insist on pushing us to speed up, or our senior minister drive us towards hasty results?
The next town is almost here. Whether you find yourself waiting to pass, or wishing the person behind you would get off your tail, there is hope up ahead. In the next town, there is a place to rest and refuel (and to let that other driver pass!). There is a stoplight or an extra lane of traffic that will allow you to pass by and get back up to speed. Either way…press on my friend in the grace of God!