Know Your Role

Over the course of the last ten years, I’ve served in many different roles in the church. I have a passion for serving, but what I quickly learned is that passion alone is not always enough to produce the results we desire.


For example, nine years ago I began serving as the Missions Director at my church. It was a volunteer position that had previously not existed and looking back probably a position I didn’t really want, but at the time every other role was filled.

So I became the worst Missions Director in history. From what I can recall, we did two “Missions” events that year.

Our first event was a Valentine’s spaghetti dinner to raise money for missions, which no one showed up to. Even though all the food was provided for free, we somehow still ended up losing money on the event.

Our second and what ended up being our last big event for missions was a “Sponsor Sunday.” World Vision had entrusted me with cards for twelve kids that needed monthly sponsors. People love kids. How hard could this be? Apparently, it was much harder than I thought because not a single child was sponsored that day.

By the fall of 2007, it looked like my ministry career would be very short lived.

Thankfully, I had a Pastor who realized something I didn’t. He realized I wasn’t a failure. I was just in the wrong role. That fall he had a conversation with me that would set me on the course that has brought me where I am today.

Here’s what I’ve learned since that conversation.

Your Passion + Your Skill + God’s Purpose = Your Role

  • Your Passion – What is it that you love to do? It’s ok if you don’t really know. Neither did I. I just knew that I loved serving people. Over the years I’ve learned that what I really love is building teams, systems, and processes to better serve people. Your passion may be completely different from that. The important thing is to figure out what that is because once you have that you can combine it with…
  • Your Skill – What are you good at? You can be passionate about a lot of things, but chances are you’re only going to be a good at a few. We run into problems when we try to let passion trump skill. They have to work together. Let me explain. You may be really passionate about singing, but you may not have the skill of singing. If you were to pursue a career in singing, you’re just going to end up disappointed. What are you talented at? What can you do better than most people? Once you figure that out, you need to combine it with…
  • God’s Purpose – Having great skill, but no passion is wasteful. Having great passion, but no skill is disappointing. But seeing someone with great skill and great passion who misses out on God’s purpose is heart breaking. Yet the world is full of these people. So ask yourself, what did God put you on this Earth to do? How can you use your passion and skill to carry out God’s purpose? Once you discover that, you’ve discovered…
  • Your Role – We all have a role to play in this grand story that God has created. To find your role, combine your passion with your talent with God’s purpose.

Have you ever been in the wrong role? How did you realize it? Let us know in the comments below.

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