Last week my sister had to call the fire department because her kitchen caught on fire. Because they acted quickly the fire was contained and the damage was minimal. It reminded me of a time when my kitchen caught on fire while living in La Jolla, CA. Wish I could say I acted quickly but I didn’t. In fact I just continued what I was doing because I assumed it was a false alarm. I was meeting in my office with a student for discipleship and expected one of my roomies to reset the alarm. Problem was no one was home. Long story short is that though the house was saved and no one was hurt, we did have damage in the kitchen and it could have been much worse. I realized later that the fire was my fault because I had not turned the stove completely off when assuming I had. Assuming is not a good thing and especially when it is an alarm. The purpose of an alarm is to save lives. This morning as I was reading over some church consulting material I got to thinking about how we as leaders can ignore alarms. Not very smart but it happens all the time. Here are 5 ministry alarms that we should always respond to:
Declining personal devotions. For the Christian leader this is the most deadly alarm to ignore. Without a consistent quiet time with the Lord everything will begin to crumble. Sure a person can go on natural gifts and abilities for a while but eventually it will all crash. John 15:5 is one of many verses to support this Biblical principle.
- Declining family time. How is your time with your spouse? Do you have a regular date night? Do you invest time to connect? Do you keep short accounts? How is your relationship with your children? How are they doing? Whenever you put your ministry ahead of your family watch out. Sure there can be crunch times like special projects or deadlines you are working on. But whenever you short change your spouse or children it will destroy what you are working so hard to accomplish. Not to mention that we can miss out on the greatest blessing God has given us.
Declining Vision. Have you been so busy that you have forgotten your vision? Do your team members know it? I’ve seen it happen time and time again…a person gets so busy that they forget it and that means everyone around them will also forget it. Are you recruiting to a vision? Without a vision the people will perish.
Declining Passion. Are you excited about Jesus? Are you passionate about following him? Do you feel ablaze for God? Passion is like cream in your cofffee. Without this you miss the best part. For you non-coffee drinkers what about sugar in your cake?
Declining Growth. Is your church growing? Are people coming to Christ? It’s a temptation to live in denial and ignore a decline in your church. But the principle still stands if you are not growing you are dying. Are you growing? Do you have a personal growth plan? If you are not growing you are dying.
Have you experienced any of these alarms recently? At the next post let’s discuss healthy ways to respond.