I just started reading a phenomenal book called “Good To Great” by Jim Collins. It’s one of the most popular tomes in the business sector, ever. It’s guaranteed to be on the “must read” list for anyone working in the marketplace. Two chapters in, I see why. Don’t worry, this isn’t a book review or a commentary on what the church can learn from the business world. Instead, I want to share with you how one concept from the book is deeply spiritual and true to the way God works. Ready? Here we go.
Collins talks a lot about a bus in his book. The bus is the team that’s going to take a company to it’s desired destination. He emphasizes that the people on the bus are the first thing to worry about when creating an effective organization. In fact, the individuals on board should be considered before it’s even determined where the bus is going! The right people need to be in the right seats and the wrong people need to be off the bus altogether. The best leaders focus on who before they concern themselves with what or where.
Have you ever considered the fact that God has invited you onto His bus? Yes, you are part of the “team” that God’s put together for accomplishing His mission in the world. Crazy thought, I know, but God created leadership and gets it right every single time. Jesus initiated this thing called the Church that is full of individuals uniquely gifted and positioned to participate in His reconciling the world to the Father. He invited fishermen, tax collectors, garbage collectors, lawyers, school teachers, stay-at-home moms, CEOs, cashiers, landscapers, scientists and literally countless others to be on the team.
I love the way Paul puts it in 2 Corinthians 5: All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. (18-20)
You might not feel like you have much to offer. Too many people think they need to be an eloquent public speaker, theological scholar, or an exceptional leader in order to be used by God for God’s goals. No, you just need to sit in your seat. God has you here because He knew you had a particular role to play. Part of Jim Collins’ findings was that the right people had to be in the right seat. You are called to be all that God’s made you to be right where you’re at. Remember, the church isn’t a place, it’s a people. So participating does NOT mean you need to work at a church—you need to be the church wherever you are. That means in your cubicle, your classroom, or your living room. That’s your seat. If you aren’t sitting there, no one else will.
God called you to follow Him because He had something for you to do, and you’re the right person for the job. He knows your history, your mistakes, and all your shortcomings (mine too). And yet, He invites you on board. So have a seat—let’s do this.
After serving as the Student Ministries Pastor for 10 years, Josh Petersen is now the Lead Pastor of Immanuel Church. He’s married to Heidi and together they live with Jake, Logan, Cole and Sawyer at the circus they call home.