As part of ministry in a college/seminary town, we’re privileged to have young men serving as interns in our church. These are guys who are serious about vocational ministry and the call of God on their lives. We require them to observe every facet of our ministry and interview ministry directors. Often, they help us see areas of weakness that need attention.
One question I often get from these men is, “How do you guys get so much done?” Now, please understand, they may be saying “Wow, you guys are amazing! You are machines.” But I think the truth is they are actually cowed as they understand how much effort it takes to make a ministry function. (I know I am.) We’ve got some standard answers that are honest and, we hope, helpful. BUT, at the heart of it, the truth is that there is a great commitment on behalf of God’s people that really makes the engine run. Our people love the Lord and give themselves wholeheartedly to Him.
However, when asked to distill the idea of making a ministry run to a talking point I’ve sometimes answered in this fashion:Give me 15 minutes and I’ll change your life. Life is busy. Family is busy. Add ministry to the mix and busy goes exponential. You can be overwhelmed by it or you can “count the cost” in 15-minute increments. Here’s what I mean …
I don’t know many people who wear only one hat in ministry. Most of us are a fashion show of hats waiting for Blackwell to dissect us and tell us what rock to crawl under. It’s not that we don’t want to do well or multi-task for success. The simple truth is, we often forget to think about it. This is why I say, Give me 15 minutes and I’ll change your life.
Don’t allow things to manage you: Be the manager. Take 15 minutes and look at the new task or problem from every angle. Twist it, bite it, kick it around. Show it who’s boss. Sure, 15 minutes doesn’t sound like a lot of time but I dare you to try it. You will be pleasantly surprised at the number of ideas you’ll have and questions you can ask and answer in 15 minutes. You may need more time to work on a task, but 15 minutes is a great start. Write everything down while you are thinking of it. Once the 15 minutes are past, move on if that’s what your day requires. But by purposely giving the issue deliberate thought for a set time you are creating an attainable goal as you start planning. You are making progress toward completion and, if need be, you have real data to share up the chain of command if you are asked to do so.
Can 15 minutes really change your life? It’s worth a try and it’s a whole lot better than wishing you had worked on it and trying to make up for lost time. Luke 14:25