Problematic e-mails, disappointing meetings and awkward encounters often cause any ministry leader some type of anxiety and grief. Yet meaningful reminders that problems are also opportunities can change anxious reactions into meaningful encounters.
Consider the young shepherd’s size when he insisted on fighting Goliath. An adulterer who Jesus taught about “grace”. An old disciple, stranded on an island, who saw and wrote about the “eternal kingdom”. How did they view their limitations and problematic circumstances?
Reacting to our gut and disappointing situations is quit normal, actually expected. What happens after our initial reaction is most important. Reminders help us to surrender our initial reactions to God, to see the situation as an opportunity for Him to work.
One reminder is the use of S.W.O.T. S=strength; W=opportunity; O=opportunity; T=threats. This acronym helps when planning any program, event or problem-solving situation.
Practically speaking, take out a white piece of paper or use a white board. At the top, define the problem. Underneath the problem, write Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats from left to right. Next, ask God’s Spirit to help you write out your/team’s characteristics, under each category. Then write out action points made up from the S.W.O.T..
Through God’s lead, you are now ready to respond to the problem as an opportunity, whether individually or as a team.