I meet many staff who love what they do and are committed to making a difference but who are deeply discouraged by the lack of direction within their organization. One such individual wrote to me this week, deeply frustrated. She indicated that while she has tried to convince her ministry partner of the need for greater clarity, the response is always, "If God wants us to have more direction, He will provide it." In other cases, good staff have left their jobs because of the lack of clarity around direction.

Ministry ambiguity is disheartening, demotivating, discouraging and disempowering. People want to know where we are going and why and how they can make the best contribution to the ministry. In addition, when there is a lack of clarity, different individuals make up their own clarity which results in competing definitions of clarity within the organization.

Healthy organizations have clarity around their mission, the culture they are building, their non-negotiable guiding principles as well as their central focus. The best organizations have clarity on everything that matters. Clarity gives you a clear target to move toward. When there is a lack of clarity, any direction works but with greatly diminished results. 

Providing clarity becomes a breath of fresh air, a fresh wind for any ministry. I worked this last week with a church that has not had clarity in a long time. By the time we were finished, there was a huge amount of energy in the room as participants realized that it was possible to create clarity for their church that was clear, motivating, healthy, Jesus-focused, and reflected his mandate for the church. One said I have not been this excited for a long time. Of course, a lot of hard work is ahead, but there is a target to work toward that is missional, God-centered and exciting.

My point is that getting to clarity - understanding where you want to go in ministry and knowing how you will get there, along with forging a healthy culture is not just a nice thing. It actually breathes fresh wind into the ministry. It motivates and excites, and most importantly, it gives people hope. Hope that we can make a difference for Jesus. Hope that we have a direction to follow. Hope that we can all be on the same page. Hope that we can develop a God-honoring ethos and culture. Hope that God can infuse us with His power to accomplish His work.

Clarity can help us move from discouragement to hope. If you want to understand how your ministry can make that move, my book, Leading From the Sandbox, can help you get there. Chapters 2, 3, and 4 are a roadmap to the hope of clarity. 

TJ Addington (Addington Consulting) has a passion to help individuals and organizations maximize their impact and go to the next level of effectiveness. He can be reached at tjaddington@gmail.com.

"Creating cultures of organizational excellence."

  • Aug 18, 2015
  • Category: News
  • Comments: 0
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