As part of the current series addressing shifts leaders should consider making this year, I connected with Josh Griffin. Josh is the High School Pastor at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA. He is a father of 4 and has been in full-time youth ministry for over 15 years. Here’s our interview:
TONY: What’s one thing that leaders and/or organizations (businesses, churches, non-profits, etc.) should consider stopping in 2012?
JOSH: Stop walking around with such urgency. When it is time for the service to start and the church staff is briskly running around the worship center then you are basically telling everyone, “I don’t have time for you.” If someone dares to stop you, you fidget nervously and struggle to maintain eye contact due to fear of dropping the ball on the last lingering details on the program task list. You peer over this more mortal’s shoulder and silently freak out as the countdown timer signifying the service start is now nearing zero.
You pacify the person who caused the momentary diversion with a shallow promise to connect later in the week. You know in your heart that you won’t make the connection, but it satisfies the moment and you quickly return to the task at hand. Just to make sure you’re not stopped again, you take out your phone and participate in a ghost phone call.
TONY: What’s one thing that leaders and/or organizations (businesses, churches, non-profits, etc.) should consider starting in 2012?
JOSH: Start caring about people AND the program. I’m a program person all the way. There’s nothing more exciting to me than sharing the timeless message of Christ in a creative way. There always will be a tension between the program and spending time with people. The last minute details of a service and adjustments to the program sheet cannot crowd out our love for and time with people. Care about the program, care about the creative elements, be proud of your latest spoken word or creative mini-movie that you sacrificed and sweat over multiple late nights earlier in the week. But be keenly aware of the people who might need you before the service. Stop the cycle of outdoing last week’s amazing program and overflow with love for the people who are sitting in the audience.
You can follow more of Josh’s thoughts and updates from his ministry on Twitter.