Many great men of God have described the Church as a team that has great similarities to team sports. This is because many characteristics of sports teams are also present in the Church team. We have a goal, we work together, there is great energy, and there must also be energy for the Church to win just like sports teams must do to win. Again, just like in team sports, members of the team participate in different ways. Many Christians choose to play the role of bystanders while at the same time being part of the team. They never get in the game and do not make any effort to get in the game. They are satisfied staying in the stands. They come to Church, they join the worship, and they go home. They forget they are part of the team, they come the same way as spectators will come, stay in the stands and watch. They are not part of any ministry, and the idea of sharing Christ is completely alien to them. They cannot be bothered to do any Church work, after all the Pastors and Lay Leaders are there to do whatever needs to be done. These folks are in the team but not in the game.
We have often heard the phrase, “we are stronger together”, which has the same meaning as the African proverb about the resiliency of the broom not being in the power of a broom stick but the unity of several sticks. When we all get active in the Christian ministries, we have the advantage of synergy where our combined efforts are greater or better than the addition of our individual efforts. God has blessed each of us with talents, but our talents are different from each other. When we come together as in a Church team or ministry the combined effect of our different talents applied synergistically will avail much more than each of us using our talents as individuals. A sports team, a Church, or Christian ministry for that matter, will only be effective when they work together as a team, a team in synergy. It must be clear to all of us then that a team where more than half the team members are either on the sideline or in the stands cannot be in synergy because synergy presupposes that everyone is giving their best effort. When God established this team, His plan was for the Church to work in a team where everyone plays.
Anyone of us who is interested in accomplishing God’s divine purpose in this world, must understand the need to be part of God’s team, and once in the team, must understand that the action is in the game, not on the sidelines and not in the stands. How do you get in the game? The nature of Church, the nature of Christian ministries, creates a lot of opportunities for everyone to get in the game. We must know that our goal is to win souls for Christ and help them to become matured Christians who can turn around and disciple others for Christ. In this endeavor, there are ample opportunities. There is teamwork in praying, there is teamwork in praising God, there is teamwork, in the evangelism, there is teamwork in the children ministry, there is teamwork in ushering, media, Christian education, hospitality, welfare, membership, mentoring, etc. To get in the game be a member of any of these ministries and more. Understand the vision and be active so your team can be effective. Help to recruit and mentor people in these ministries. Disciple them. Remember you are fruitful when you reproduce. Do not put one leg in and one leg out, because that is akin to being on the sidelines. You are in the game, but you have taken yourself out.
Remember, in our game everyone on the team plays. We are not limited by numbers. No one should be in the stand, and we do not expect anyone to stay on the sidelines either. There are no bench warmers in this our game of winning souls for Christ. The more of us that are playing, the more successful we shall be. The more playing time we get, the better we also become. In our team all roles are important because whatever your role is, it is because the Lord has called you specially for that role. So, my brothers and sisters, take your position in your team, take pride in your God-given role, get in the game. In our game, winning is when we have made disciples of all nations, and the only way to win is when everyone on our team is playing. Are you in the game?
February 20, 2022 – Pastor Simbo Odunaiya