I’m a musician in my church. The second youngest musician and the most vocal of them. This has the implication that at times I encounter situations in this ministry that the other musicians don’t really encounter.
A young person wants to play the drums or the guitar on church services where the youth group are doing the devotional, but she wants for me to “move mountains” so that she could have her desires met. She asked me last night: “since the youth are having the devotional tomorrow, can you let me play the drums?”. I knew immediately that I had to say no and I knew that there were two reasons for it:
- this desire violated the order of the church (I also didn’t really want to give up my well earned spot because she wants me to).
- she doesn’t have the right mentality to play on that particular service.
When I was confronted with this situation, I knew that there was a bigger problem: I didn’t have the authority to say yes or no, because the Pastor hadn’t given that authority to anyone in years. So today I had to talk to my Pastor about what was going to be my course of action.
To understand the context of this post, I have to say that my impression of my Pastor is that he is not as helpful and as reasonable as I feel that he should be, which is a biased standard. So my mind went in under the idea that the Pastor wasn’t going to listen much less give me the authority that I needed to guide this young person where they should go.
I presented the issue at hand and the type of decisions that I had to make without the authorization to make them. I then presented the reason that it was important to deal with in a manner that made everyone happy in the long run while not causing a big disturbance. I presented my proposal to solve the problem in the most logical way possible: I told him that the best way to solve this problem was that I was going to tell her that her best path to be a musician was to start at the congas with the goal to end up at the drums; that I wanted to give me the guarantee that he would say yes to her if she asked to play the congas and drums so she can learn what she needs to learn to deal with those weaknesses.
To my surprise, he not only accepted my proposal but he also gave me the authority to make future decisions about what she can and cannot do in music without having to go to him first. This was huge, because it put her musical development in my hands under the context of a Paul and Timothy mentor-mentee dynamic. This was something that God already had put in my hands, but now it is something that is approved by my Pastor. It also forces me to have to re-think who the Pastor is in my mind. He is more reasonable than I expect. He can say yes, at times. I have to say something, though: It still feels weird getting what you want (sometimes more) from my Pastor.