How would this rule change your church?

How would this rule change your church?
January 3, 2012 Sue Brage
There is a principle I try to live by:
When I add something to my life, I try to remove something else.

Take my closet for example. Whenever I add a piece of clothing or a pair of shoes, I should try to get rid of something I no longer use. As I’m trying to find space for my Christmas gifts, I am reminded of this idea once again. What am I willing to give up to make space for the new things I have? This discipline forces me to think about the “stuff” in my life, and keeps me from being overrun.

It’s a great principle when I work it. Yet, I often find myself justifying both what I add AND and what I keep.

If only I could live by this rule in every area of my life! When I take on a new project, I get rid of an old one. When I start a new book, I give an old away. When I add a new activity, I take one off my schedule. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? Or not…

How many times do we find ourselves adding and adding and adding, without ever even considering subtracting. I mean the things we do (and have, and enjoy) are just too important to give up! Yet, this may be the very reason we are stressed, distressed, and lose our focus.

What if we applied this to our ministries? Or our churches?

What if every time we added a program, we found one to let go of? Oh–we could never do that! Or could we?

There are seasons for everything, and if we are honest with ourselves, we can probably find at least one program, event, curriculum, ministry or tradition that is past its prime and ready to be phased out. Following this “rule,” if you will, can bring balance. It can even out our crazy schedules and declutter our lives and calendars. It may force you to ask tough questions and make some tough decisions, but the results will be so worth it.

What challenges do you see in adopting this rule in your church? In your personal life? 


  1. Andee 12 years ago

    I was just contemplating this morning that it’s OK to let go of ministry. I was reading the story of the Lord speaking to Elijah in 1 Kings 19:9-18. Elijah realizes that his ministry is over, and he is running away–perhaps because he doesn’t know how to let it end. The Lord provides the exit strategy through the anointing of Elisha to be Elijah’s replacement.
    There is a season to every ministry, an appropriate time and way for a ministry to end so that something new can be birthed and grow. It’s OK to let it go.

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