Some leaders fly solo because they think they’re the only one who can do it the right way. Some leaders fly solo because they think there’s nobody available to help. And some leaders fly solo because they’re too difficult to work with and no one wants to be around them.
But in Christian leadership, I’m convinced that flying solo is not one of the options. As you may know, I’m a huge advocate for volunteer leadership. So even if you are in a situation where you can’t afford to pay people, or think the pickings of quality folks is too slim, I believe there are possibilities before you that you might not be seeing. Here are 4 reasons why I believe so passionately that every Christian leader MUST build a team:
- The work of God was never meant to be done alone.
Whether you are in a for-profit company or organization, a non-profit, or a church ministry, you are doing God’s work. He is your boss. Which means He gets to define the terms. And if you look closely at the way God approaches his work, It’s always in the context of teams. In fact, God Himself in his very nature, is a team Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The very first ministry team on earth was Adam and Eve. When God looked at Adam he said, “it’s not good for man to be alone.” Some apply that to marriage and singleness, but I think we can also apply it to work. When Jesus came to save the world right at the start of his ministry the first thing he did was to recruit a team of twelve disciples. When he sent those disciples out to do their work, he didn’t send them alone, he sent them two-by-two. There are no lone ranger leaders. Naomi had Ruth, Elijah had Elisha, David had Jonathan, Nehemiah had the Israelite leaders, Paul had Barnabas and Timothy and John Mark and Silas. The very first thing you need to be thinking is ‘who should be doing this with me?’ Who is my team? This is important to us because it’s important to God. Team ministry is at the very heart of who God is.
- You will become a bottleneck.
If you try to do the work all yourself, YOU will be the one who holds back your potential impact. You will singlehandedly restrict the effectiveness of your endeavor. Did you ever notice that bottlenecks are always at the top of the bottle. You only have so much capacity. So, it’s simple math. One person can only do one person worth of work, but two people can do twice that much, and three people three-times. Without a team, you will singlehandedly limit your potential and with a team, you will multiply it.
- You will burn out.
Burnout is epidemic in our time, and one of the contributing factors is people trying to do the work alone without building a team. In Exodus 18:17-18, the leader Moses was confronted by his father-in-law about trying to do ministry alone, 17 Moses’ father-in-law, Jethro, said to him, “What you are doing is not good. 18 You and the people with you will certainly wear yourselves out, for the thing is too heavy for you. You are not able to do it alone. Moses was trying to do the work of 100 people instead of finding 100 people to do the work. God’s work was never meant to be done alone.
- You will rob others from doing important ministry
This one goes out specifically to pastors and church leaders. Over the years have had this discussion with church leaders; they say, “I feel guilty asking volunteers to do something that’s my job to do.” My response is always the same, “The body of Christ doesn’t have just one part it has many parts. And by trying to do everything yourself, you are actually robbing people who are good at that thing, and who would love to do that thing, from doing it. And it may be the very assignment that connects them to God in a life-giving way.” We have been given the unspeakable privilege of inviting people into what might be the only involvement in their lives that makes them feel like an instrument in the hands of God. We’re allowing them to experience the thrill of knowing that the Creator God has used them to touch a human life. If you do it all yourself you will rob them of this eternal privilege.
If you have been flying solo in your God-given assignment, build a team. The people you include will be empowered, you and your family will be relieved, and God’s name will be honored and His kingdom will be multiplied.