Question 4: Do you have a shotgun approach to ministry?

Proverbs 28:19 has some time-tested advice for all of us:  “He who tills his land will have plenty of food, but he who follows empty pursuits will have poverty in plenty.”

A radio station that tries to play every type of music and meet the preferred musical style of every possible listener is doomed to fail.  Good things often compete with the “God things.”  God has not called you to do everything.  But He has called you to do some things.  It is better to till your own land and leave the other good things to others!  Church consultant Dan Reiland says that, “If you and your church team employ a nearly random freedom to start ministries, even though they may be good, you create a busy mess of activity. You inadvertently experience a lack of focus that drains the best ministries, and exhausts volunteers and staff. In the big picture, you are doing more and accomplishing less.”   Doing more and accomplishing less?  Nobody would choose that kind of reality.  But that’s exactly what we are doing when we lose the focus on the few things that has called us to do well.

Reiland continues, “It’s important that you offer fewer ministries in order to accomplish more life-changing ministry impact. To do this, you need to be very intentional in your choice of ministries. No one church can do every ministry, that’s an obvious fact. So what you choose to do needs to be selected wisely and prayerfully.  Saying no to all other ministry options is not squelching the Holy Spirit, it’s common sense granted from God. Doing less allows you to do it better and with deeper impact”.

If you have been doing too many things in life and ministry, here are some questions to ponder:

  • At this stage of your life and ministry do you have a clear sense of what God has most essentially called you to do?  If so, what is it? (It’s okay if you don’t fully know the answer.)


  • What responsibilities and ministries have you taken on without the Lord’s clear leading and permission?


  • What can you do to simplify and better focus your ministry energies?  Are there some activities that you need to pull the plug on?  If they are vital ministries, is there someone you can delegate to?

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