Stop What You Are Doing!

Maximized Leadership: Stop What You Are Doing!

I once read an interesting metaphor describing church strategies. It noted that Dakota tribal wisdom says:

“When you discover you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.” 

However, churches often find themselves trying other strategies.  Consider the following ten ways that churches and organizations deal with the problem of riding dead horses:

10 – Provide additional funding to increase the horse’s performance.

9 –   Provide training to teach people how to ride dead horses.

8 –   Appoint a committee to revive the dead horse.

7 –   Change the person riding the horse.

6 –   Say things like: “This is the way we always have ridden this horse.”

5 –   Appoint a committee to study the horse.

4 –   Harness several dead horses together for increased speed.

3 –   Pass a resolution declaring: “The horse is not dead.”

2 –   Arrange to visit other sites to see how they ride dead horses.

1 –  Buy a stronger whip.

Churches and organizations are really good at starting programs but have much difficulty stopping them. One of the keys to your progress may be to put a ministry or program to rest.  Is it really making a difference for the Kingdom? Questions you should ask about each program or ministry:

  1. Does this fit within the framework of our purpose? If not, it should be put to rest. You cannot pour energy into everything and surely should not waste time on those things that do not fit what you are called to do.
  1. Do we have enough leaders to do it well? In some cases ministry or programs may need to be suspended if adequate leadership is not in place. A ministry done poorly can sometimes do more harm than if the ministry is not even functioning at all.
  1. Do we have enough resources to do it well? Not everything requires money. But, some things do. The comments above apply here once again.
  1. Do we have a passionate person providing leadership? When something is everyone’s responsibility, it tends to be no one’s responsibility. Someone must take the lead and must do so with passion.
  1. Is it essential, important, or good? If it is good, stop doing it and focus on those things that are essential and important.

Many churches and ministries struggle because they try to do too many things and/or they do too many things poorly. What is the last ministry you stopped doing? It may be time but it sure will not be easy. Check in next week to learn more about stopping ministry. It is a skill that is lacking in many churches and organizations.