Regarding the right balance in teamwork, Darryl Zanuck wrote, “If two people on the same job agree all the time, then one is useless. If they disagree all the time, both are useless.”
I’d have to say that besides the usual expressions of gratitude for this weekend, one of my greatest blessings in life is to serve alongside a diverse, godly and gifted team. I am truly thankful for our staff here at The Bridge. They challenge me and each other, and then work together as a powerful force. All of us here at The Bridge are blessed by them, and yet many do not know who does what. So let me fill you in.
While I am the Lead Pastor, Brian Nelson oversees our staff as Lead Ministry Pastor. He does that alongside his Worship Leading responsibilities. John Knautz is our Connections Pastor, helping all new people take their initial steps in connecting to the church. Becky Hardt is our Office Manager and also serves as Volunteer Coordinator and my Assistant. Vicki Borgman is Becky’s Administrative Assistant for all office responsibilities. Glenda Stoll is our Administrative Assistant for Spanish Ministries. Junior Ziegler is our Community Pastor, overseeing Community Outreach and Community Groups. He is also a regular on our teaching team. Karl Clauson is also a member of that teaching team. Karen Knautz is our Bridge Kids Director and Melissa Pateras is her assistant. Eden Catano oversees the Spanish side of Bridge Kids. Mike Thicksten is our Production Coordinator, overseeing sound, video and lighting. Josh Roman assists Pastor Brian in Worship for both the English and Spanish services. Jordan Machonga is our Student Ministries Director and Robert Bain assists him with the Middle School Ministry. Cheryl Capps is our Bookkeeper. Ezequiel Catano is our custodian and Ann Marie Aoyagi shares some of those duties.
Here’s what I love about this team. First, they are all individually godly, gifted, and passionate about what they do. We only hire individuals who exhibit maturity in their walk with Christ and in their personal lives. I often remind staff that ministry flows from life and not the other way around. In other words, only those who are examples in their personal lives will be effective in ministry leadership. Every one of our staff members love God, live lives consistent with their professions, and are examples as husbands, wives, parents, workers, and people. I love this about them. They are all examples. And every one of them demonstrate a lifestyle that people in our church and community would do well to follow.
Secondly, they work together as a team just the way a team should work together. They don’t always agree. But they have the maturity and confidence to speak up and challenge one another when they should. And they have the humility to listen when someone does. But when it’s all said and done and a decision is made, they stick together, support each other, and are loyal. They love each other and they like each other (there is a difference). That’s the definition of a healthy team.
So staff, thanks for serving with me. It is an honor to work alongside each of you!
And church, let them know that they are appreciated. The best way to do that is to follow their leadership with gracious attitudes. They are worthy examples to follow!