I’m a speaker, its what I do, or at least one of the things I do.
Today, I wasn’t speaking, or at least I wasn’t ‘the speaker’ at any of the things that happened in our churches. Because of that, several things happened-
first up, I was able to relax into the hosting role (leading worship is what some people call it, others call it curating, a bunch call it presiding or celebrating- anyway, that thing where you’re standing at the front of church). Because I relaxed, I felt able to respond to God and to encourage folks to engage more- which is all good.
second up, others were able to develop their skills at our other church and in our children’s nativity, which is a really good thing to do. For some reason we often feel that we’re unable to do things in church which we’re more than capable of in the rest of our week, and yet others really are able to do those things which we just can’t… odd, isn’t it? So, me not speaking or doing stuff caused a bunch of other people to step into positions of responsibility.
Of course, those who were with me at any stage of the day might say i’d done just as much speaking as I ever do… maybe next time I’ll try complete silence…
Standing aside and not doing things ourselves has more power than we often acknowledge. It shows up our self-importance, and just as much allows other people to develop and grow in confidence. If we’re wondering about a good model for this, I seem to remember some Jewish carpenter used to delegate a fair bit- he sent his apprentices (sorry, disciples) out in pairs during their training, and commissioned them to go to the ends of the earth- thats a fair bit of leeway being granted there. And when he sent them, he was allowing them to act, to speak, to be his representatives wherever they found themselves… he trusted them. So lets trust ourselves, and trust others.
What about you, do you find this idea of standing aside easy? does it worry you that people want to do things differently or might make mistakes, or are you thrilled by how much they’ll learn?