‘I don’t know what my job description will be, but this is what’s on my heart, and what’s needed, so its what I’ll keep doing.’ I said that just the other afternoon, talking with a friend about what next year might hold. When I am at my best I function based on what’s needed, my heart’s direction in God’s call and the best that I can bring. The rest of the time (sadly a lot of the time!) its about what others think, recognition, my history, support, resources, status, what I think I am capable of, my rights … and the list goes on.
Job descriptions are great tools, but when I am closed up and protecting myself, my job description can become like a safety frame I cling to and never want to stray from. When I am free my job description becomes a launch pad into all sorts of possibility and growth. The jobs I have most enjoyed have been ones where I have not stayed limited by my own fears or my job description, I have usually ended up with a portfolio that two or three could comfortably share between them.
My organization recently had its annual conference. This was a big one for us as we went through the process of adopting a new constitution which incorporated a new organizational structure. The last two years have been pretty difficult in our organization. The fellowship on which our work and lives together is based, has been broken and hurt in many different ways and at many different points, trust as seeped away and we have all responded differently. Thankfully shalom is beginning to return and healing is coming, but there have been times in the last few years when we have resorted to the safety frame of legalities and shrunk back to protect ourselves whilst causing hurt to others.
In this new day, each of us, regardless of title or role, have people that we lead, and in leading, our task is to call each other out into the adventure, in the warm sunshine of our fellowship with the high standards it requires of us – indeed that are worthy of us. If we don’t, the past has shown that we could fall back to the lowest common denominator of documents that just as easily keep us trapped and small, as they might launch us into worlds of possibility and growth depending whether we chose to live by them alone or by the higher standards of Christ centered fellowship, within which they fall.