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priorities of time

I wrestled in an earlier post with issues of time and busyness. I’m still wrestling with it. I think I’m making progress this time… maybe. Becky and I have talked about things quite a lot. She’s supportive (no suprise there) of my desires to get the schedule cleaned off and getting my time priorities changed, and she’ll help keep reminding me so that I don’t just forget about it after a while and drift back to the same old way of doing things.

My “ideal situation” right now is still what I mentioned before: I’d like to just dump everything church-related for a while and see how my schedule settles out. Then I could slowly put it back together the right way, and see how much time I have to do church-related things.

Let me reiterate here that I’m not trying to get out of church responsibilities; I just need to act on what I’ve recognized: that the church can make do without me for a while, but my family can’t.

I don’t think my “ideal situation” is going to happen – it’s just not fair to everybody at church. I think there’d be too many hard feelings and misunderstandings to make it comfortable to continue attending if I just totally dropped my responsibilities there. So I need to find a tolerable compromise. One has suggested itself here recently that just might work.

  1. Turn all my responsibilities for video and sound over to someone else. I don’t know why I even had them in the first place, other than that they loosely relate to the music aspect of the Sunday service. We need to find somebody else to be responsible for making sure the overheads with song lyrics are ready, and that someone is available to run them. It’s a stress that I don’t need on Sunday morning. My fear is that we won’t be able to find someone with a level of responsibility high enough to actually ensure that it gets done correctly.
  2. Drop my elder apprenticing role for now. While my gifting and desire is still to be an elder and to participate in church leadership, I’m appreciating more and more the counsel my dad gave me this summer: that while there is no real age restriction on eldership, there is a “season of life” where your time is needed elsewhere. Family responsibilities have to come first.
  3. Spread out the worship team leadership load. Right now I’m responsible for planning the service every week, then leading the practice and then both Sunday morning services. Every week. We have two teams of musicians/singers, but only one leader. I’ve taken maybe 3 weeks off in the past year. That’s just not enough. What I’d like to do is find someone willing to take leadership of one of the two worship teams. That way I’d only be responsible for planning and leading every-other week. I think that would be do-able.

I’ve put these plans of abdication on hold for a week or two since I promised my pastor (who is also a good friend and has really been my mentor for the past several years) that I wouldn’t make a decision without discussing it with him again, and he’s on a well-deserved vacation to Florida until the end of this week. We discussed it on the phone back before he left; he expressed his desire to talk it over so he could give me some “objective” advice. I laughed out loud. I hope I didn’t offend him. Good advice he will have in abundance. Objective? Not for a minute. He has a stake in this as well; if I dropped everything musically at the church it would have a big impact on Sunday worship services. I know it sounds conceited, but, sadly, it’s true.

What I need to hear him say is this: “I don’t want you to leave things totally. I think there are ways you can reduce your responsibilities without dropping everything. But, if you think it’s what God is calling you to do, then I will support you on that.” I think I will hear it, but I haven’t heard it yet.

I will be continuing to pray for God’s leading in this area. I need wisdom. And Lord, if You want to just send a couple good worship leaders to Noelridge, that would be fine with me, too. ๐Ÿ™‚

6 Comments

  1. Amber Amber

    โ€œI donโ€™t want you to leave things totally. I think there are ways you can reduce your responsibilities without dropping everything. But, if you think itโ€™s what God is calling you to do, then I will support you on
    that.โ€
    That would be very nice to hear : )
    I’ll pray that it all works out
    Have fun in WI this weekend!
    ttys

  2. I can so relate– it sounds like we live parallel lives.

    I found it helped a lot of give away the video responsibilities, but still oversee them. I also have recruited other worship/band leaders to rotate on the schedule. I’m still leading worship more than they are, but every month I get one Sunday off. This gives me the opportunity to play a different instrument in the band, to observe them leading, or to sit in the congregation with my family (which I do less often).

    I also use ServiceBuilder to help plan things. It has taken away so much of the stress of all this. (Hope it’s okay to refer to a commercial program here in the comments– you can Google for the link).

    Hang in there,
    ~Jason

  3. Ah lovely, advertising with the personal touch….

  4. Jason Jason

    Sorry… I admit it looks suspicious… I was actually just googling for service planning, and your blog came up. I do that a lot to see hat people are saying in their blogs about worship planning… then I saw that you and I actually have a lot in common.

    You can read my blog at crookedbush.com– really, I’m legit. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Anyway, God bless– sorry for the little advertisement in there– couldn’t resist.

    ~Jason

  5. I’ll take a look at your blog… thanks for mentioning it. I get a little suspicious of comment spam… ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the kind words. Good to know there are others out there in the same spot.

    I’ll take a look at ServiceBuilder, too. I’ve had a database tool like that floating around in the back of my mind for a couple years now, but haven’t had the time to make it happen. It would be great if somebody else has done it already.

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