While management courses are taught and degrees awarded for management strategies, it doesn’t always make for a good manager. We all come across poor managers at our workplace, social groups and religious organizations. This is because to a large extent, most managers are too preoccupied with their own agendas, fail to recognize the individuality of the people they manage, and end up being unproductive and ineffective.
‘If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?’ (1 Timothy 3:5)
Paul makes this statement as he elaborates to Timothy, the requirements for one who desires leadership in the church. A few inferences follow from Paul’s statement.
- Management begins at home: Much like everything else in life, management begins at home. A leadership position in the church attracts prominence and attention, while managing your family is a silent, unheralded chore. But lest man proves himself in the latter, he is bound to fail in the former. The most common reason for making a poor manager is selfishness- one who cannot think beyond his or her own needs and agendas, for whom everything and everyone they manage is only another excuse to get ahead in life. For such a person, managing their family would be a non-starter. Because for the amount of time you invest in your family, your gains in prominence are miniscule. So when a person has proven himself by having a well managed family, he has demonstrated that selfless management and leadership come naturally to him.
- A Family needs management: Management involves actively making interventions to bring about desired results. It presupposes discernment about the needs of the family, a willingness to invest time and effort and a perseverance to ensure that the goals are met. Man’s natural inclination is for evil and when management is not done, the invariable result is one of deterioration. A family that is managed well will find each member being nurtured according to their God given talents to rise to fulfill their potential and find satisfaction in doing so.
- Management principles remain consistent: Paul’s statement also implies that a person who manages his family well will most likely also be able to manage the church well. This is because management principles don’t change. Selflessness, recognizing authority, understanding roles, finding worth in what you do, being God centered, inspiration and encouragement are all principles that will find success both at home and in the church.
Above all, be it family or any organization we choose to manage, a God centered attitude of doing it primarily for God is a sure recipe for success.
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