All teams succeed when they are unified. That is true of an athletic team, a business team, or a disciple making team. Can you imagine a professional or collegiate football team trying to win a championship if the quarterback is doing his own thing regardless of what everyone else is doing? Can you imagine a store or restaurant manager making business decisions that directly oppose the priorities of the president or CEO of the corporation? No way! Can you imagine a leader in a local church teaching ideas that oppose the overall mission of the local church in which they are teaching? Unfortunately, I’ve seen it happen.
Honestly, I’ve seen discipleship leaders at their best and at their worst. I’ve seen discipleship leaders that are fiercely loyal and some that will hijack the movement for their own mission. Even Jesus had a few hijackers on His team. Hijackers are people who want to take over and take the group in a direction the hijacker wants to go rather than the direction everyone else is already going. Just think about it for a moment. Judas went down his own path and as a result he missed the blessing of being part of the greatest movement in history.
Don’t be a a Judas! Protect the mission and movement. Don’t be the one who is responsible for creating division or disunity. A divisive person is actually an abomination in the eyes of God. Proverbs 6:19 tells us that “one who sows discord among brothers” is an abomination to God. Being an abomination in the eyes of the Lord is a bad place to be. Those words speak to just how serious God sees disunity and how important it is to protect the mission.
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Disunity can manifest itself in many different ways. Sometimes it is blatant and easily recognizable. It can also be more subtle and not so easy to recognize. I’ve seen leaders attempt to split churches and ministries with attacks and accusations and I’ve seen leaders simply resist the strategy and the process the organization has chosen.
The phrase “I don’t want to do it that way” can be one of the most devastating steps toward disunity in a movement of disciple making. I’ve seen this attitude wreck many a church that was trying to make disciples. I would encourage any leader who can’t support and protect the mission of the organization he or she is a part of to re-evaluate his or her motives. If you cannot help drive the mission, make sure you are not sabotaging the mission for others.
Jean-Paul Sartre once said, “Only the guy who isn’t rowing has time to rock the boat.” What a great statement. When you are pulling your weight along with others and doing the work of making disciples, it is much harder to cause division. Be a rower!
By Ken Adams