While the Senior Pastor’s role in the cell church is absolutely necessary, allow me to observe from the chair of the smaller cell church’s office.
I enter transition to cell systems with the supreme hope that “this is it, I have finally found the answers to ministry that I have been searching for!” I have done this before, selecting a new style of ministry every few years in a quest to discover a key to success as designed or required by my governing board, elders, or simply my own entrepreneurial spirit. It is not new territory, but I am encouraged by what appears to be the LAST change needed.
As the pastor of a smaller-sized cell church most of the work is still in my hands or direct oversight. The varied tasks of counseling, preaching, teaching, day-to-day management of office and communications, worship team direction, youth, Sunday schools and teacher training, etc, etc are a plate full of potential time consuming jobs.
Now I want to add the miracle cure of cell systems and think (or hope) everything will improve rather quickly, thereby alleviating much of the busywork that drains my energy. To my chagrin I find that I now need to add leading a cell and coaching to my list of duties. Simultaneously I begin casting vision to the body in order to transition fully.
Along the way (1-3 years into the project) I am feeling tempted to change yet again or return to program designed ministry. This is driven by two sources: 1) I am not experiencing the growth or transition at the rate I thought was possible and (2) look at all that mail I receive announcing the â€œnext best seminarâ€ or packaged plan for church growth with everything I need for making ministry work with no effort on my part. (ridiculous offers, but they come to my mailbox each week).
Time to get a grip on the reality that preparing the soil, planting the seed, fertilizing the crop, weeding and fighting the pests are all still necessary for bringing a harvest to fullness. You (and I) may not be good delegators and so we feel the pressure to do everything ourselves and hereby we trap ourselves into a downward cycle of defeat. The Cell system is a leadership development tool that decentralizes ministry and empowers others to fulfill their calling in God. This will in turn fulfill them as believers who now fully complete the discipleship of Jesus by reaching others with the Gospel and making new disciples.
You are the Senior Pastor, God loves you and directed you to lead His flock into a fruitful field of ministry that will bless them and the city, village or town around you. Stay with it, you are vital to His plan!
Do you connect with these thoughts and observations? Let us hear back from you on what you do to stay on task.