Meetings, meetings, meetings. How many meetings do we fit into each day, week, month? Meetings are necessary parts of the job! Hopefully many of those meetings are opened with prayer: Prayers of thanksgiving for the volunteers to do the work, gratitude for the gifts from God, prayers asking for soft hearts, and sometimes prayers to quiet flapping tongues. Sometimes even prayers as bold to say, “We really don’t want to be here, but we want to do your work, God, so please show us the way.” Yes, I’ve prayed this one!
Where else does prayer and administration intersect? In a very real sense, prayer has the power to connect worship and business. I believe a church cannot run well without prayer.
I’ve consulted with churches on the verge of destruction to help them reorganize and get back on track. The first question I ask when working with a church is, “What is the prayer life like of administration and leadership?” Each time I find a church in trouble, the answer to that question reveals a shallow or non-existent prayer life. Heads hang low, and I hear many reasons why leaders are not praying:
- They’ve forgotten why they do what they do.
- They’ve forgotten the great commission! “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations”. Matthew 28:19
- They’ve forgotten, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. Matthew 19:26
Administrative Boards, Staff-Parish Relation Teams, paid staff and pastors, listen. If you miss everything else, please catch this: Don’t stop praying! Mix prayer and administration all the time!
Leadership must cultivate a solid and bold prayer life, asking for God to bless the efforts of a congregation. If it is money, ask boldly. If it is for the congregation’s hearts to soften, ask boldly. If it is for unity, ask boldly.
The key is to cultivate and maintain a deep and impactful relationship with Christ.
Leaders can only take others where they’ve already gone. The pastor does have to always take the lead on prayer. Ask boldly and love your people well. Administrators and lay church leaders: pray for your staff leadership and ensure that your staff has time to connect with God daily. Deepening your personal relationship with Christ will deepen the church’s impact and strengthening the local church.