When Church Staff No Longer “Fit” The Vision

I heard the latest account this week …

of a story I am seeing play out primarily in fast-growing mega churches gone corporate around the globe. Hard working staff are deemed no longer “in alignment with the vision and purpose” by senior/executive leadership . . and are essentially pushed out the door.

I do understand that churches morph in terms of priorities, programs and processes as they grow – and much of this is necessary, but I also understand that Jesus never brought any of His disciples to a “drop-off” point as His mission grew in stature and band with with a broader cross section of followers in tow.


A Decision To Dismiss …

And for all of our Big-Box, Multi-Site, Mega-Church senior leader brothers and sisters in Christ out there – understand this: a decision to dismiss any staff due to growth and organizational change is simply a massive failure to lead on your part. Your intoxication with your pre-determined “church culture du joir” and your over-reliance on corporate vs. Spirit-driven processes and priorities has caused you to forget that God’s story is never finished in any of our staff and it is our responsibility to “hear and see” that story, support that story and pour into that story . . at all cost.


“Isn’t it time we quit living for the weekends
and start living and leading again . . for Him?”
– David “JB” Miller –


Senior Pastor, Executive Pastor, Chief Operations Pastor . . quit telling your church as a whole that all lives matter while simultaneously showing one staff member after another “the door”. Your exit strategy is really an act of cowardice because it insures that the cost doesn’t become too high when it comes to developing God’s brightest and best who come equipped with a calling and gifts that are formidable for King and Kingdom. Your job is not to solely find round pegs for your round holes . . your job is to the let the Holy Spirit blow up your corporate paradigm and remember that God uses all of His children by His anointing and power vs the cleverness of our intellect.


Before you hit the “dismiss button”
.. once again,
I offer 3 questions for consideration:


  • I wonder – how often do we as senior/executive ministry leaders set up those who serve with us, you know – those who go to bat for us and with us – those who find themselves on either a paid or volunteer basis in a “junior staff” role – how often do we set them up for failure simply because we remain largely uninvested and allow them to dangle in more of a performance-oriented environment than a covenant community under the Cross?
  • I wonder – how often do we as senior/executive ministry leaders do disservice to those we are called to equip by personally gravitating more to being in the shadow of success and growing fame and influence vs. a life of camping out and pouring into those who have yet to fully bloom? Easier to associate with the Juggernauts for Jesus than the Ragamuffins and Misfits who are drawn to the Master . . except one problem . . there are no juggernauts for Jesus . . there are no Kingdom influencers who operate at an elevation of the soul which is above grace . . there are no shepherds on your staff (including yourself) who don’t stumble and stagger . . it’s just a matter of when and more importantly, it’s a matter of whether or not they know you will be there to help them stand once again.
  • I wonder – how often do we as Pastors and ministry leaders look more like gift certificate holders who default to the corporate convenience of “replace” instead of “retool”, “repair” or “restore” when a team member fails, falters or loses focus or simply needs a fresh start? Our culture has taught only too well (when it comes to relationships) how to “forget you” and move on to “next”.



The point in all of this …

is that our best-heard sermon is not the one we preach on Sunday but the one we live out with our staff away from the bright lights – isn’t it time we quit living for the weekends and start living and leading again . . for Him? To do so should bring an end to any misdirected leadership that concludes that some of our staff “no longer fit the vision”.

Read more on this topic in “Uninvested: Leadership In The Me Lane”

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About the author : David "JB" Miller


David "JB" Miller is founder and author at LifeLetter Ministries. He and his wife Cheri make their home in beautiful Paradise Valley, Arizona and have six children and six grandchildren they absolutely adore.

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