Monday, March 16, 2015

Why Integrity Matters in Children's Ministry - Do What We Say We Will Do

If asked, I'm confident we would all agree integrity matters in children's ministry, but do we actually live as people who show integrity in our children's ministry? When it actually comes down to it, do the volunteers, families and children truly see us as people of integrity? People who actually do what we say we will do? People who do not gossip? People who tell the truth? People who do not take credit for what others think of and do? People who can truly be trusted?

In far too many cases the answers to those questions, sadly, are "no". Why is this? Certainly we all want to be people who show high integrity in all areas of our lives, but especially in our ministries; so why is it so many of us do not? There are several areas where our integrity - or sadly, lack thereof, will show up; today let's think about being people who do what we say we will do. When might this happen? Consider the following . . . 
  • We say we will do things without thinking about it. We do not truly consider if we can actually do what we say we will do, so then when we do not do what we said we will do, people who were expecting us to do something, no longer trust us.
  • We say we will do something, but really do not plan to do it - we may just say we will do it to get people to stop asking; and then hope they will not pay attention to what we actually do. When this happens, people will notice and will no longer trust us. 
  • We say we will do things, but do not keep track of what we have said. We are too casual about it, but do not stop to consider how people may then be expecting us to do what we said we will do and they end up hurt and no longer trust us when we do not.
There are other times this may happen, but regardless of when or why we say we will do something, but then do not do it, we need to know doing this damages our ministry and leaves us as people who can not be trusted. Look at Matthew 5:33-37 -
33 “Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not break your oath, but fulfill to the Lord the vows you have made.’ 34 But I tell you, do not swear an oath at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throne; 35 or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King.36 And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. 37 All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.
Do not tell people you will do something unless you are going to keep track of it and then do what you said you will do. If something happens and you are not able to do it, take ownership and responsibility. Talk with the people who you told you would do whatever it was and make sure they understand what happened to change things. We must be people who do what we say we will do. We must be people whose lives and ministry show an absolutely commitment to integrity.

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