Our Leadership Team spent the better part of this afternoon planning for next year as well as the balance of this year. Wow, planning is not easy. It is a struggle…discerning between needs, wants, and desires. Today, we discussed responsibilites and staffing. This is a semi-annual process for us. I love my fellow team members. We have honest conversation and seek the Lord’s direction. What is really cool is that none of us have all the answers. We iterate back and forth until we come to a consensus. Did we come up with all the answers today? No, we sure did not. We did however, agree on a direction…the details will shake out as we continue to meet and challenge each other. Planning is not easy. It is hard work. It is very necessary part of leadership.
Archive for May, 2009
As we begin the budgeting process for next year, it is time to explain how we budget here at North Side Baptist Church. We basically start with zero and work our up way upwards. Specifically, all budget line items are rolled back to zero. We evaluate each line item, including ministries, expenses, staff positions and mission support items against our mission statement. The question that we ask ourselves is: “Does this ministry expense support the mission of North Side?” We want to make sure that our financial resources are being budgeted and spent wisely, especially in light of today’s economy.
As we look to next year, we make the necessary decisions for the funding that is required for that ministry. We empower and equip leaders with the necessary financial resources, but require accountability. Some line items go up, some down and some stay the same. In the end, the focus is on the mission and our financial resources are used to achieve the mission. It is wise financial stewardship.
I can’t believe it…yes, it is time to start the process of developing the budget for our next fiscal year. Whew, time flies. We will start pulling some historical data together and put them in a readable format for our ministry leaders and Pastors. The process will be much simpler this year. Several years ago, we invested in a new information system (Shelby Systems) that has a strong financial module.
The process will be a challenge though, with our current economy. We realize that God is much bigger than our economy, however, we must be wise and prudent as we plan for next year. It will be a challenge! We are blessed here at North Side with faithful and generous members. Additionally, God continues to grow our family.
We are blessed, but this budget process will be a challenge. We require wisdom, prudence, planning and much prayer.
I have struggled in recent days with this blog thing. I, at times, wonder if I really could be a voice of leadership in the church. I drafted this post last night and questioned whether or not to hit the “publish” button.
Then, this morning in our staff meeting, Jeff Lethco talked about obedience as it related to missions. Boy, he hit me right between the eyes. So here it is…Leadership is about obedience.
As children of God, we are called to be obedient to God’s Word. Specifically, we are commanded to make disciples…Matthew 28:19-20. As church leaders, we should view this command as our marching orders.
Jesus gave us the prefect picture of obedience by coming to earth and suffering a cruel death for our sins. That evening in the garden of Gethsemane, we see an obedient Son:
And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will.” Matt 26:39 (NASB)
Jesus was obedient to the will of His Father. He knew that following His Father’s will was going to be difficult, however, after praying to His Father, He was obedient.
Obedience is all about following the will of the Father. As we lead within our church, we must be obedient to the will of our Father rather than persuing our own will. Some may call this our own agenda. We, leaders in the local church, are are to make disciples, that is, leading people to Christ, growing them up in Christ and equipping them to impact their world for Christ.
I will lead my areas of responsiblity at North Side through obedience to my Father.
Over the past years, I learned a number of lessons about leadership which I believe can be applied in the local church. I would like to share these with you on my blog in the coming weeks. Here are some of my thoughts:
- Leadership is about Obedience
- Leadership is about Lordship
- Leadership is about Perseverance
- Leadership is about Releasing Man made Traditions
- Leadership is about Vision casting
- Leadership is about Communicating
- Leadership is about Listening
- Leadership is about Discerning
- Leadership is about Learning
- Leadership is about Equipping
- Leadership is about Empowering
- Leadership is about Accountability
- Leadership is about Responsibility
I look forward to sharing theses lessons with you.
God’s call on my life into full time Christian ministry came through my Pastor, Jeff Lethco. It was back in the summer of 2001 when Jeff and I were working together on a capital stewardship campaign. Part of the process was to work with the SCBC to address the need for a Business Administrator at North Side. We rolled up our sleeves and tackled the capital campaign along with some very gifted leaders in our church.
When the time came for the final conversation about the campaign, the convention guy turned to us and said now let’s talk about the Business Administrator position. We talked about position responsibilities and characteristics of potential candidates. Jeff sat back in his chair and said, “OK, we can look at candidates all day long, but we have the right person here now”. Honestly, I thought that he was talking about the convention guy, but he was looking directly at me all the while that he was speaking. I nearly fell out of my chair! Who? Me? Obviously, he had my name mixed up with someone else. Jeff said,”Ken you would be perfect for the job”. He asked me to at least consider it and pray about it. The three of us prayed together for clarity of God’s will for my life. It was gut check time!
It was through those prayers that God opened my heart to at least consider the position. My prayer was… OK Lord, I will be open and obedient to you. It was pretty safe for me to say that because there were some pretty insurmountable obstacles for me to consider leaving my position of division manager for a staffing company and come to work in the church. Through the course of the next couple of weeks, God removed the obstacles one by one. It came down to the point that it was my will versus God’s will for my life. Then I began convincing myself that I was not qualified for the position.
Jeff and I spoke and prayed together a number of times through the process. I relied heavily on a great mentor and friend of mine, Eddie Lloyd. He provided wise counsel for me as well. As we looked at various leaders in the Bible, I soon realized the real meaning of the phrase…God qualifies those that He calls…consider Moses, David, Paul. God worked out all the details and removed the obstacles…it was gut check time! When God removes the obstacles for us to do ministry, we need to just do it. It was time to walk the walk. Long story short, I accepted the position on a part time basis…worked part time for 8 months…then accepted a full time position as Administrator and Education guy.
Today, I serve as Executive Pastor at North Side…humbled to say the least. It has been an interesting journey, going on nearly 8 years. Today, I can look back and see the purpose that God brought me to help lead here at North Side Baptist Church. I thank Him everyday for ministry partners like Jeff Lethco and Eddie Loyd who allow themselves to be used of God. I also thank Him for a loving and supportive wife who is constantly by my side. But most of all, I thank my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ for what He did for me!
The thought of blogging and the name of Ken Petrus do not seem to go together. So why would I consider blogging? I certainly have enough on my plate here at North Side Baptist Church. Why would I voluntarily add another task to my ever growing ToDo list?
Well, I feel that I can provide a unique insight, some may call it perspective, to leaders in the local church that, may in some small way, encourage them. When I say leaders, I am not just speaking of paid staff, but volunteer leaders as well. You see, I was called into full time Christian ministry late in life. I spent 51 years in the pew before I became part of the staff here at North Side. Check out my bio on the “About” button above.
I see pastors and staff who are frustrated and discouraged that their church is literally dying before their eyes. They are brokenhearted. I see volunteer leaders who are discouraged and sometimes angry that they no longer have a voice in their church.
The last seven and a half years has been a real education for me. Although, God has given me unique gifts, talents, abilities, experiences and personality to grow his Kingdom, I was not qualified to step in this position. You see I truly believe that God does not call the qualified, he qualifies those that He calls. More on this later…
Whew, I made it through my first blog post!
Hey, I’m Ken Petrus, the luckiest guy in the world serving as Executive Pastor at North Side. I came on staff in 2001 after working in the business world for over 30 years. I cannot believe that God allows me to use all of my past failures and successes to serve here at North Side. It is really cool see first hand how God works by weaving our life experiences together in order to grow His Kingdom.