Remember that the goal of involving an emerging leader in ministry is NOT busyness, and NOT filling a position in the church that needs help. The goal is the ministry effectiveness of that promising young leader.
|STEP 1||Determine the ministry or inter-personal skill that you want to develop – the outcome.|
|STEP 2||Write out a “ministry outcomes plan” detailing what skills you want him or her to have learned by the end of the experience (for those of you who profit from forms, see the attached form).|
|STEP 3||In that plan, you will need to delineate how much practice and assistance he will need before he can do the skill alone, and state what activity he will be involved in, who will work with him to train him, and how long the training will last.|
|STEP 4||The mentor should keep an eye on how the apprenticeship progresses and speak periodically with the emerging leader and with the person under whom he is training.|
|STEP 5||At the conclusion of the apprenticeship, the mentor should sit down with all parties involved, assess what was learned and what skills were developed and determine if more training is needed in that area.|
THE IMPORTANCE OF MODELING
In an apprenticeship, you work alongside someone else who is modeling a skill or capability. The emerging leader will watch the person doing the modeling, and eventually imitate the ministry behavior with his own personal adjustments.
Even though he might be the overall mentor, a pastor does not have to be the model for all of the apprenticeships – unless he is the only one who does ministry in the church! The more models the emerging leader has, the more well-rounded he will be.
A church may not be used to having someone sit in to observe a class or a counseling session. Congregants may not really want to hear anyone preach other than their pastor or teach other than their favorite Sunday school teacher. Therefore, it is often necessary to take the time to prepare the church, through preaching and teaching, on the subject of leaders mentoring emerging leaders, church-based leadership development, etc.
In addition to the congregation, there are several reasons why a pastor may not want an emerging leader to be involved in ministry.
- It is normally easier to just do something yourself rather than have to slow down and explain everything.
- The pastor might be a perfectionist, likes things done in a sharp and professional way, and knows the emerging leader can’t do things as well as he can.
- Like the dad fearing dents to his nice car, the pastor fears that his congregants will not be patient with the emerging leader whose involvement might eventually hurt church attendance or morale.
- The pastor believes that the sum and substance of his job description is being up in front of the congregation, not training others to be up in front, counseling and not developing others to counsel.
- Like Saul and David, the pastor fears that the young leader might eventually be preferred.
These are serious matters to consider, but when we boil away our traditions and schedules, and look at the biblical job description of shepherds, we see that developing “faithful men who will be able to teach others also” is not a mere afterthought. It should be a core value of every leader. The success of church leaders is not determined by corporate magnitude but by the continued ministry effectiveness, after we are gone, of those we have developed. Success = Successors.