“How do you do it?”
That’s the question I was recently asked by a great friend of mine, Steve Dirks, who was in town to preach for me. He was preparing to teach 4 weekend services at Awaken, and was curious at how it was possible for us to run so many services every weekend. I know there are many pastors who teach far more than 4 times on any given weekend. Pastor Carl Lentz at Hillsong NYC preaches most Sundays at 10, 12, 2, 5, 7 and 9. Sometimes they throw in a 4 & 6pm as well (you know, just for fun). Pastor Pedro Garcia at Calvary Kendall also teaches 6 times each Sunday (including driving to multiple locations). Whether you teach once to a handful of people or you’re teaching 4, 6, or 12 times to thousands of people at multiple locations, this fact is the same: it couldn’t be done and it won’t last long without the power of a team.
Steve was preaching for me that weekend because Jenn and I had just gotten back from a 10-day trip to Brazil. I had preached 5 different messages out there, then we had celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary in rainy Rio de Janeiro. A lot happened at the church while I was gone for just 10 days. In fact, I was going to take Steve on a tour of the church and our new South Venue, but was accompanied by Nate, Awaken’s Executive Pastor, because he informed me that I’d probably need a tour with all the changes that had taken place! He was right. I kept asking questions, pointing out new changes and additions, and by the end, I was amazed at all that had taken place that I had nothing to do with!
Awaken certainly is not without its problems (no church is). However, I am consistently amazed at the generosity, work ethic, and servant-heartedness of the Awaken Team Members. Our 12 Ministry Teams are going hard all the time. Throughout the week, people are working (often behind the scenes) to make sure that Awaken Groups are running well, Awaken Kids is functioning, healthy, and clean, meals are served to families in need, videos and the website are updated, and so much more. On top of our “regularly scheduled programming,” we’re also currently preparing to double our square footage as we add a new worship venue and kids’ space!
One of the main things that makes the Awaken Team so successful is a sense of ownership. Each person understands that they are not just a set of hands, but they are an integral part of a bigger picture. Nobody just changes diapers or just holds a door open or just prints bulletins. As we all own our gifts and put them to use, the body of Christ functions properly, needs are met, and lives are changed.
How do I do it? How is a church designed to run? What does every pastor pray for more of? The power of a team.
If you’re not serving somewhere, you’re missing out. Get on board!