I have been a reluctant leader at most points along my leadership
journey. I am a little skeptical of leaders who are too eager to lead.
It seems the best of them are a bit slow to respond to the call that
rests upon their life. The best ones seem to often say No only to later
change to a Yes to God’s invitation.
I learned to lead worship because there was no one to take charge of this
when the need arose. The REAL worship leaders kept flaking out at
important times of ministry. I got tired of waiting for them to make a
showing and delaying things. Finally, out of frustration, I broke down
and bought my own guitar, a chord chart and figured out the rest out on
my own. I didn’t feel a strong sense of calling to lead worship. At no
point did anyone give me a word from the Lord affirming my calling to
this area. There was no special leading at all. I simply saw a need and
stepped onto the ice—that is, a took a risk to see what would happen if I
tried to lead worship on my own.
I discovered something: leading others to worship God dynamically isn’t that difficult for me.
It took a number of frustrating small group times when the designated
worship either failed to show up or when they showed the worship wasn’t
all that good. In other words, frustration leads to insightful calling.
Here are some truths I have come to in outreach leadership effectiveness.
- You really are alone.
But don’t panic. This is actually good news. Simply realize this fact:
In many cases no one else is going to show up to lead. If you are
waiting for someone else to show up before you get going, you may well
never get started. You are God’s secret weapon! As someone has cleverly said, “If it is to be, it’s up to me.”
- You really are the leader.
When you notice what needs to be done it is a sign you might well be
called into leadership. The first step to a dynamic breakthrough is the
gift of noticing. Yes, there is a gift of noticing. You see what others
don’t pick up on. You are sensitive to what is not happening, at least
what is not yet happening. Clarity like that can only come about as the
Holy Spirit rests upon you and empowers you.
- You really are equipped.
God will not call you lead in outreach without giving you all the
skills you require for effectiveness. Sometimes completely new skills
and abilities come upon you. He doesn’t always place brand new gifts in
us. He likes to awaken the gifts he has already placed in you. The vital
truth to pick up on…God is going to give you all you need in order to
reach out in power.