Advent Is No Time for Waiting If You’re A Church Leader

Church leaders are disciples with particular roles and responsibilities in the community of faith. We celebrate and lead celebration, remember and lead remembrance, observe and lead observance, simultaneously. For me, the second half of those couplets is always primary in the moment.

Being a leader means exercising your discipleship with the church at the same time and in the same space as all the saints, while also exercising your discipleship in different times and spaces, when all the saints are doing something else.

Advent is not the time for church leaders to do a deep dive on waiting and anticipation. Our role is to lead the church in those things, so, for us, Advent is execution time. Our waiting and anticipation needs to have been done already, perhaps during a season of Advent planning that took place in September, or even in the middle of the summer.

Another example: I’m leading a time of morning prayer this morning, where of course I will pray. But I won’t pray as much as when I’m not leading.

Personal discipleship must inform and guide our church leadership. It’s just that it happens on something of a staggered calendar from the one we’re leading others to follow.

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