Last night, before bedtime, I spent some time talking with my 3-year old son, Jude.
I started with the obvious by asking, “What do you want to talk about?”
He replied, “Um, staff meeting“.
“Staff meeting.” I asked, “Who goes to staff meeting?”
“All of your friends!” He replied.
Before I could find out how he reached this conclusion, he had changed topics to how Ironman gets the ‘bad guys’ and the policemen get the ‘crazy guys’. But that’s a story for another day.
This morning, I’ve been pondering the fact that he perceives my staff meetings as a ‘meeting of friends’.
Now, he is correct that everyone whom I work with at the church are my friends. We get along pretty well, most of the time. However, how does he come to that conclusion? Is it how I talk about staff meetings when I come home? Is it that I look forward to staff meetings?
There have been occasions, where he has visited staff meetings. I guess from the 3-year old perspective, it looks like we’re a bunch of friends hanging out together.
As I think back to previous careers, perhaps that’s one of the major benefits of working in ministry and I’ve been missing it? It’s true that ministry work does not produce big pay checks, but what’s the dollar value of a staff meeting of friends?
Before I became a Youth Pastor, I worked in a sales office for a major hotel chain. When I think back to those staff meetings, I do not miss them in the slightest! Those staff meetings were uncomfortable and we were definitely more based on acquaintances than friends. In all honesty, many of us acted as though we were enemies.
When I talked about sales staff meetings at home, I complained more than relaying information about what had taken place. In fact, talking about our sales staff meetings at home probably made me more upset than just attending them.
If Jude had of ever visited our sales staff meetings, I would have needed to put plugs in his ears. Typically, there was often profanity and people spoke with and about each other with guide an aggressive tone. It may have made money, but it was a terrible environment for relational growth!
So today, I write a simple thank you to my co-workers (friends) at Peninsula Grace Brethren Church. Thank you for making staff meeting a positive experience. Thank you for investing in our relationships and not just the work we do. Thank you for working with me instead of against me. Thank you for positively impacting my son.
What would your kids think of your staff meeting?