This is a great read from Mr. Rick Warren. Below are some excerpts:
Here are some advantages to a simple, gift-based structure:
It focuses the church on ministry, not maintenance. When organization is emphasized, ministry becomes the focus. I heard about a grease factory that, as it became more and more successful, had to build more machinery to produce the grease. But, they also had to use more of the grease on the machinery they were adding. Pretty soon, they closed the marketing department because all the grease was being used on their own machinery.
If you streamline your structure, then you can maximize ministry and minimize maintenance. If you cut out about half of your meetings, your church would be more effective. I noticed the other day that my peach tree is covered in peaches; in fact, there might be 50 small peaches blooming on one branch. This week, I’m going to have to go out and remove about half of them. If you want big fruit, you have to get rid of about half of what you already have. That’s true in ministry, too: You have to focus if you want big results.
It makes better use of talent. I remember many years ago when we were looking for land for Saddleback Church, I asked people who had a background in real estate or development to show up at my office the next night. There were 14 guys who showed up, and I didn’t know half of them. They went around the room, introduced themselves, and said why they should be on the task force.
The first guy said, “My name’s Tom, and I buy all the sites for Kmart.” You’re in, Tom.
The next guy says, “Last year I did $91 million in land acquisition.” You’re in.
Next guy: “I’m vice president of First Interstate Bank.” You’re in.
All the guys were highly qualified — far more than me. I said, “I believe God wants us to have 50 acres of land for our church; your task is to go find it. God bless you. Meeting dismissed.” That’s what you call liberating the members for ministry. I’ve had this philosophy for more than 30 years, and Saddleback has gone far beyond what I could do because I released people to do what they are good at doing.
From my experience, sports ministers aren’t very good at this. Sports ministers don’t often think of the gifts of people in their ministries and how they can unleash them.
What would a sports ministry that did this look like? Read about it here.