When deciding which issues are significant enough to confront and run the risk of conflict, I ask myself these questions:
- Does this situation involve something that is contrary to our mission as a church? If the issue before me does not conflict with our church's mission, helping people discover a personal relationship with God and become fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ, then I think it ought to be left alone or dealt with in a non-confrontational manner.
- Does this issue cause us to compromise our commitment as followers of Jesus Christ? Our adult Bible study leaders were not adequately preparing for their Sunday morning classes. That hampered our efforts to teach and to model the principle of offering excellence to God. I decided to address the matter directly. We explained that the issue was not just arrival time and preparation, but a true modeling of the cost of serving Christ. The leadership teams responded well and committed to change.
- A year from now, will it matter to our church whether we dealt with this issue? I try to evaluate the "One Year Significance" of potentially volatile issues. If direct intervention is not likely to make a difference, then I am inclined to leave it alone. It's amazing how few issues will be remembered in a year. What makes many of them significant is the degree of conflict they cause needlessly.