One complaint I have heard repeatedly about the church is that too often it is run like a business. Suggesting the use of job descriptions might further serve to support that claim. Some will change the wording to “ministry” descriptions to make it sound less business-like. But, it will take more than a name change to move away from this perception. Since both terms are used in churches, you’ll find an interchange throughout these posts.
Benefits of Job Descriptions
To determine the validity of using job descriptions in the church, perhaps we can look at the practical side.
- They are useful as a guide in the recruiting process to help you look for the right person.
- They let people know what is expected of them if they accept a position.
- They provide a sense of accountability, giving something against which to measure oneself.
- They serve as a tool for staff evaluations to help the person better serve or perhaps determine if they would be best suited elsewhere.
- They can be used as a training tool. Read an example: Using Ministry Job Descriptions in Teacher Training
Certainly these don’t appear to be ungodly uses for ministry descriptions, particularly if their usage in these ways is bathed in prayer.
Development of Job Descriptions
You can purchase a book like The Big Book of Job Descriptions for Ministry or the Church Job Descriptions Download for ready-to-use job or ministry descriptions. (Clicking on the links will take you to one of our affiliate stores.) Such resources are great for saving time but do they really fit what God wants to do in your local church? Is God into the “cookie-cutter” approach? I strongly recommend using resources like that merely as a guide.
Instead, . . .
- Tailor the job descriptions to your particular church or ministry needs.
- Make them reflect what you believe about God’s purposes for your church, body life, the Great Commission, and the like … the basics covered on this site for leaders that should be brought into consideration in all you do.
As we proceed with this topic in the practicum, we will develop a ministry description template that will grow out of these basics. You can subscribe to receive e-mail notice of new posts so you don’t miss what is to come.