Work Matters: 10 Transferable Concepts from JH to All of Ministry

My first ministry position was serving as Director of Junior High Ministries at Grace Chapel in Lexington, MA. I ended up staying on the pastoral staff for over 11 years, in three additional leadership positions. But, the first few years were incredibly formative for my soul, my character, and my competencies as a pastor. There are several principles that were forged on the anvil of junior high school ministry. I call them transferable concepts because I’ve seen them replicated in every other ministry setting since that amazing season of life and service.

Here they are for your consideration:

1. Team – A team based ministry is superior to all other options.

2. Lead – Each team needs a competent leader who appropriately leads.

3. Relationships are #1 – People over programs…always.

4. Mimicry – Followers mimic…watch what you say and do.

5. 1 step ahead – Anticipate, plan, and always be one step ahead.

6. Management of stuff – Lots of things to care for; manage well.

7. Retreats – Time away from the routines deepens everything and everyone.

8. Context – You are not an island or a silo; you need and belong to the larger Body of Christ.

9. Church – Teach by words and example that God’s Church matters; positively influence health at all times.

10. Pray – Be in the Word daily, walk with God prayerfully, examen your life reflectively.

Spiritual formation includes every aspect of a believer’s life and daily ministry endeavors. My prayer for the teams I lead and the leaders I serve is that a whole-life perspective will guide, direct, and sustain…from the inside (our heart and soul) out (our service to others). May it be so for you today!


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Steve Macchia

Founder & President

Steve is a graduate of Northwestern College (IA) and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (M.Div. and D.Min.). His prior ministry includes serving on the pastoral staff at Grace Chapel (Lexington, MA) and as president of Vision New England. Since July 1, 2003 Steve has served as founder and president of Leadership Transformations, director of the Pierce Center for Disciple-Building, and adjunct faculty in the Doctor of Ministry department at Gordon-Conwell. He is the author of sixteen books, including The Discerning Life (Zondervan Reflective),  Baker bestseller Becoming a Healthy Church, and Crafting a Rule of Life (IVP). He lives in the Boston area with his wife Ruth and is the proud father of two grown children, Rebekah and Nathan, daughter in-love Ashley, and papa to his beloved granddaughter, Brenna Lynn and twin grandsons, Aiden Joseph and Carson Stephen. “My soul comes alive singing the great hymns of the church and enjoying the beauty of God’s creation. I’m in awe of God for fulfilling the dream for LTI that he birthed in my heart, for the team he has assembled, and the transformational impact experienced in the leaders and teams we serve.

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