Here’s an excerpt from our interview with C3, whose leaders Chris and Vicki Matthews and their team, build their health and vitality through initiatives such as this. 

Read the conversation below. 

NCLS: It sounds like your programs, initiatives and administration are rolling along with the development of your people as a group and as a church together. That, as the needs come up, then the next stage will occur, of discerning ‘how do we make this happen’ or ‘how do we better administrate’?

VM: Yes, because another thing that we say a lot is, leadership is taken, it’s not given. You hear a lot of people talking about ‘You can make a leader’. You can train people in leadership, you can train them for a job, but leadership itself is people stepping up. You can’t make someone step up to that plate. Leadership is taken, it’s not given. When you see somebody doing a job before you’ve actually given it to them, they’re doing it anyway. They’re already taking that role.

So then you come to them and say, hey, I’ve seen that you’ve been really helping out with the hospitality on Sunday and you’ve been out buying some of the food and I saw you preparing. Would you be interested in taking that team on? You’re already basically doing it. You’ve taken some sort of leadership. So we don’t create something and then try and hand it to somebody. It doesn’t work. We’ve done that before. It doesn’t always work.

Because usually the person will kindly say yes, and they’ll do their best to do what they can, but at some point they fail or they find it’s too much or whatever, because it wasn’t theirs in the first place. Because you have a need, you’ve tried to give it to somebody.

NCLS: I’m hearing two things come through there. One is a natural gifting or passion that you’re watching for. It’s, where are you heading? What are you automatically doing?

VM: Yes, exactly.

NCLS: And the other one is ownership, that, if people are already motivated to be doing this, then they’re already owning part of that?

VM: Yes, because people say a lot, oh, I do that, but that’s nothing. But when people are saying that, that’s because that’s their natural gifting. They don’t feel like it’s anything, because for them it’s not as much as it is if you had handed it to somebody that it’s not their gifting. It was just hard work for them. Sometimes you have to do that in a smaller church. Sometimes you have to do that to some degree. We take on roles that perhaps aren’t completely naturally ours for a time, for a season.

For the most part we try to fit people where they would naturally be happy to fit rather than force them into something that’s not. Then stepping up beyond that in terms of key leadership, again it’s taken, it’s not given. People naturally present themselves that way. You’ll find them doing things and thinking a certain way and helping with certain things. They’re naturally taking on that role, and then it’s easy to have the conversation, and to train them beyond that or help them see some of the things that role might entail or how they might go about a certain strategy within that role.

But still they’re ready to take it rather than you thinking, help, we need to find somebody. You’ll do. You’re going to have to do this because you’re a good person. They might be a good person, they might be a great person, but they’re not necessarily suited to the role. In our experience that usually ends up burning people.

We’re all about keeping people in love with the church, in love with Jesus, in love with people, not putting people off, because we always want our door to be open. We don’t want people walking out and saying, that church burnt me, or, they hurt me. Occasionally that happens. That can happen in life anyway, even when you’re aware of it, but for the most part that’s something that we’re very conscious of, keeping people in a place where they want to be here. It’s really easy for that to change.

By giving people the wrong job or putting too much expectation or not allowing enough freedom. Yes, there’s lots of things that can change that. It’s a balance.

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