BRODY, THE UNSUNG HERO IN YOUR MINISTRY

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By on March 1, 2016   /   15 Comments

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In a real-life physical battle, the front line is the area where forces are engaged in the most dangerous and brutal conflict. Every thought, action, reaction, and decision matter. What each soldier contributes to that battle is absolutely critical, because it can make the difference between life or death. All soldiers don’t work on the same task, because it would spread them too thin and leave the entire unit vulnerable. However, a mass of well-trained, well-coordinated soldiers, working in various but unified roles to accomplish an overall goal, is nothing short of extraordinary!

If you are in ministry work, there may be a very real threat of you being in physical danger. For others, you may live in a more secure location. But regardless of your environment, there will always be a raging spiritual battle taking place.  Ephesians 6:12 says, For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

And if you are actively engaging in work focused on building the kingdom of God, you are in the thick of the front lines where this warfare is the fiercest. Regardless of your specific role in this battle, all Great Commission workers are essential. Some disagree, though, and believe certain categories of these Kingdom workers are “mission critical”…and some are not. I beg to differ!

So, who are these forgotten warriors?  Who are these souls leveraging their God-given talents in the battle, but perhaps not receiving the respect they deserve? You probably know some of them. You may not see them on a daily basis. They might perform many of their tasks anonymously, uncelebrated, unnoticed, and overlooked. Who are these unsung heroes, battling alongside you and me for the glory of God, giving all they’ve got to reach every tongue, tribe, and nation with the gospel?

Brody is one of them. Let me tell you his story. Recently, a friend of mine was describing an exciting mission organization focused on equipping Christian leaders to build unity across denominational lines and doing a great job! The topic of raising personal ministry support came up, and what was said next stopped me in my tracks. My friend said, “Most in our organization can live on support, except Brody. He isn’t able to raise personal support like everyone else because, well, ya know…he does administrative work. People won’t give to that.”

Ouch! Brody is a talented guy who loves Jesus and is called to full-time vocational ministry. He could make a ton of money working for a corporation, but has been compelled by God to instead use his amazing administrative gifts to advance a Great Commission ministry. Some may look down on him, but his heart, mind, and actions are absolutely “mission critical” to the front lines of this ministry. Brody wears a number of crucial organizational hats, working hard to accomplish the mission and vision. Things would literally fall apart without self-sacrificing men and women like Brody laying their life down for the cause. These superstars are definitely storing up treasures in heaven!

In order for the field staff in your organization to really thrive, the various administrative personnel must be properly positioned according to their gifts. Without their constant service, essential components of the ministry might quickly fall, disabling the leadership from accomplishing their jobs. If you have ever played the block stacking tower game Jenga, you know what kind of mess is made when a key block is removed. Administrative staff are just like that crucial block needed to keep everything  from tumbling down! When key administrative personnel are removed, the field staff suddenly stop getting the paychecks they rely on for groceries to feed their families or missionaries are blocked from access to certain technologies, support, and creative resources that aid their work. Collectively, the Great Commission work they are all seeking to advance grinds to a messy halt. To use another battle term, to be without the “Brodys” in your ministry, will certainly cause ministry carnage!

So, is it true what my friend said about Brody? That most believers won’t pray for and financially support ministry workers that serve in administrative roles?  I think Satan, the father of lies, would want us to believe that. Yes, there may be some who won’t partner with the “Brodys” for that reason, but that seems immature, and should not be the norm.

How do we overcome this faulty thinking? It may take some time, but there are some changes we can strive for within our ministries to celebrate and help these administrative warriors for Christ to excel in the raising of their full support. Here are three recommendations:

  • Give just as much (or more!) support raising training and coaching to your administrative workers as you do for your field staff. Make sure you have an excellent plan to help each new person get spiritually healthy, vision driven, and fully-funded (before reporting for duty)!
  • Be able to explain to them (and their donors!) exactly how their administrative role directly contributes to the changed lives happening out on the field. Create a mechanism whereby those “changed life” stories are constantly being relayed back to the administrative personnel so they can stay encouraged, but also supplied with great visionary material for their newsletters.
  • Openly and regularly affirm these “behind-the-scenes” heroes in the presence of frontline field staffers. Make sure everyone (especially the leaders) fully understand 1 Corinthians 12:21 and just how valuable these administrative servants and their roles are to the overall success of the ministry, and the fulfillment of the Great Commission.

That’s a pretty short list. What else can you add to this conversation in the comment section below?

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