The Holy Spirit: A Problem Solver
In the last blog, we saw that our mindset toward leadership must change if we are to move away from politics when in church meetings. We need to moved toward being a “servant” instead of trying to be “savior”, having the buck stop with us at the top of the pyramid of hierarchal power. Leadership must be linear, beside one another, laying down one’s life for one another through service and being served. We will only begin to move away from church politics if we instill these principles.
Church business meeting’s agendas often address current “hot potatoes”, topics that have become controversial in the church. It seems like most local church leadership meetings that I have been part of are centered around “putting out the fires” of controversy that seem to lift their heads. You spend more time on “fire prevention” and “fire fighting” than on anything else, and it drains you.
To understand how the five fold can be an effective “problem solver” model you have to understand the role, the passions, the gifting, and the points of view of each of the five fold present so you know their strengths and weaknesses:
The Passion, Drive, & Point Of View toward Evangelism: The evangelistic spirit is all about birth and rebirth. It takes what is lost and gets it found! It draws people to Jesus as the only answer. It demands repentance from the old; the embracing of the new. Once that process happens, it moves on to another lost cause/or person to be found. Evangelists can recognize what is “wrong,” leading people to Jesus to make it “right”. Often the evangelistic spirit can identify the problem, define it in its simplest form (sin), and present it to the group. Now they know what they are facing. The evangelist is usually not good at problem solving, but knows how to lead people to Jesus who is the problem solver. When the group focuses on Jesus, it releases the evangelist to move on. Once a group comes to a consensus, the evangelist is an excellent source then to “proclaim the new”, give “birth” to the solution, begin the process of birthing results to solve the problem. In conclusion: the spirit of evangelism is good at identifying the problem, defining it, moving others toward Jesus for the solution as their “Savior”, then releasing it to the others. Upon their consensus, jumping back into the picture, they love to birth and proclaim.
The Passion, Drive, & Point Of View toward Shepherding: The shepherding spirit is all about caring, nurturing, developing, grooming, and growing others into the image of Jesus Christ. The shepherd will want to solve the problem from a caring, nurturing point of view. They know the solution may not be instantaneous, though it could be, but probably a process of day-to-day learning experience of adjustments and changes. Walking beside or through the solution is mandatory for the shepherd who walks with his/her sheep and knows their voice, habits, life style, wants, etc. He gives practical applications to the steps needed to solve the problem. Nurturing properly is important to him. A shepherd is a very practical, disciplined person who takes one step at a time. Shepherds are usually not in a hurry, but patient, moving in harmony with their herd. In problem solving, they see that the process leads to the solution desired as a series of steps, a walk, a journey toward a destination. They are instruments of grace, taking their lambs out of thickets, lifting ewes out of ditches, fighting of predators who thrive on problems caused by dumb sheep. They extend mercy even in the harshest of times. Their attitudes extend hope in hopeless situations, and love to the unlovely. They are the practicality of the problem solving process.
The Passion, Drive, & Point Of View toward Teaching: The teaching spirit is all about having everyone “experience” the solution, actually changing mindsets, attitudes, and patterns by “living it out”, not just intellectually knowing it. “Knowing about” forgiveness is far different that “experiencing” forgiveness or “extending” forgiveness to others. We are to not only be “hearers of the Word, but doers,” so the teacher is there to make sure the linear “walking out” the solution will be Biblically based but practical in life. Jesus had to allow Peter to sink first before allowing him to walk on water to teach the Biblical principle of “faith”. I’ve learned there are two kinds of students in life: “obedient” ones who do what they are told without questioning and the “stove touchers” who have to “experience” touching the stove to know “why” and are willing to endure the pain to learn that truth. In the end they both learned not to touch hot stoves, but the teacher has to know how to lead both groups toward the lesson to be learned. In problem solving, the teacher often is the person defining the steps and methods how to solve the problem for those who blindly accept the solutions and those who will buck it to find out “why” before resigning to the solution.
The Passion, Drive, & Point Of View toward the Prophetic: The prophetic spirit is all about relationships. Prophets want intimate relationships, usually between man and god. They want others to learn to seek the Father, get into the Presence of Jesus, listen to the Holy Spirit, and intimately enter into worship with all three. In problem solving within the church it is so important to understand “the mind of Christ” by revelation through the Holy Spirit to get a solution. The woman at the well is a good example, where Jesus “understands” her background by revealing it to her before addressing the real problem, her relationship with God. Peter had to understand “the mind of Christ’ by having the revelation of the sheet with unclean animals being acceptable before going to the House of Cornelius. This ability to know “God’s will”, his “revelation” on the problem is crucial in finding “His” solution.
The Passion, Drive, & Point Of View toward the Apostolic: The apostolic spirit is all about discernment and networking. The apostle is not the C.E.O, the Big Cheese, the Head Honcho, only a person who gets “revelation” of seeing the big picture in its entirety. He is known for discernment and knowledge. He “hears” the evangelistic voice, the shepherding call, the teacher’s objectives, the prophet’s discernment, and pulls them all together. He not only sees the problem clearly, but sees the revelation of the answer in its entirety and knows how to network the others into bringing a proper, godly solution that will bear great spiritual fruit. Unlike a C.E.O., he does not take the credit nor leads the drive toward its solution, but humbly gives the credit to the entire group, calling each in his or her own way to use their gifting toward the solution.
Now we have seen what is in our group, we can move forward toward a solution.