As a leader, one of your responsibilities is to lead your team effectively and encourage your people to seek God’s design and purposes for their ministry, whatever that might be. The way you do this is by modeling it in your own ministry, by allowing a structure within which it might happen, and by equipping your team members to align with God.
Biblical Basis for How to Lead Your Team in Ministry:
The body of Christ, just like our human bodies, is made of different parts which function differently but are also interdependent, just like a team. (Rom. 12:4-8; 1 Cor. 12:12-27). God designed the Church so that it “grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work” (Eph. 4:16). That’s how you lead your team.
So if you follow God’s design as you lead your team you will:
- accomplish more than if working on one’s own in terms of possibly both quantity and quality
- have varying perspectives brought to the table that help one see more clearly
- bring a sense of accountability to individuals that help them and the whole Body grow
- affirm and encourage one another in their walk with God
Leaders, often become independent because they tend to be naturally self-starters… people who make things happen rather than let things happen. You are either a more independent type or a perfectionist who is threatened by people wanting to do things a different way than the way you want, or whatever meets up to your standards. For others, you will tend to thrive on group endeavor… You are a people person or the type who looks more at the big picture. Regardless of your bent, you need to remember that God designed the church to operate this way. Sure, we’re different but we need to find a way to work together to serve the Lord fully!
Biblical Principles to Guide Teamwork:
- Assess and utilize the unique strengths/gifting each member brings to team and discover how to develop that (personality, spiritual gifts, experience, previous training, etc.)…. We don’t forsake our unique calling to become part of a team. (1 Cor. 12; Eph. 4:16)
- Accept differences of opinions as a valuable asset, not a liability…. As you work through differences, you have a greater potential of arriving at what is best for all. Team members who have a different opinion to you are an asset if you manage them lovingly and gracefully(Phil. 2:1-4)
- Assume attitudes of servanthood…. It’s never about one person rising to the top and controlling everybody else, but you often will have someone who facilitates the process to keep you on track. (Phil. 2:5-8)
- Acknowledge God in all you do…. Pray and worship together so as a team you are trusting God for direction in all you do, not depending on yourselves. (Prov. 3:6-7). Unless the Lord builds the house, you will labour in vain (Psalm 127:1)
- Align with the plan and purposes to which you believe God has brought you…. Keep it about God, not you. Seeking to align with God instead of conforming with one another is the greatest deterrent to infighting or letting egos get in the way. (Isa. 48:17)
Following these principles allows you to lead your team and build:
- comradeship centred around the Lord, not what you have in common or because you all agree
- communication based on honesty, not to appease or avoid conflict or manipulate people to one’s point of view
- collaboration aimed at finding what’s best, not merely compromising to fit individuals’ agendas or get something out of it for one’s self
Learning to lead your team effectively is something that is attainable, and something you can do within your team. So seek God, take your time and make wise and careful decisions!