Lone Ranger Ministry . . . Is There Such a Thing?

Remember the scene? The situation looks hopeless. A villain has taken advantage of an innocent bystander in some way. Then the Lone Ranger arrives just in time to save the day. Good prevails over evil. Departing on his white horse, Silver, the Ranger would famously say, “Hi-yo, Silver, away!” as his horse galloped toward the setting sun to the tune of William Tell Overture.

It’s interesting that for most people, when asked about the Lone Ranger, his dependable sidekick, Tonto, almost always comes to mind. Rarely would an episode feature the Ranger fighting injustice without the aid of his trusting confidant and friend.

It made me think—does that same kinship exist in our ministries? Is there such a thing as Lone Ranger ministry?

The quick and most obvious answer is certainly not. But upon deeper thought, I wonder how often our ministries suffer because we don’t include others in our crusade?

To clarify—we are not talking about doing ministry alone in a physical sense. But do we sometimes miss the mark and take on a lone ranger mentality by not truly involving others in our ministry? Are others a part of the vision God has given us to reach our corner of the world? Are we aware of how the Lord is bringing others along who share the same heart and passion for our specific ministry, and the successes of how and where He is at work?

Here are 3 truths to keep in mind:

1.  Communicate intentionally
The practice of communicating about the ministry does not normally happen by accident. Find ways to periodically share the vision and mission of your ministry—what and why has God called your ministry to? This intentional messaging links the activities to vision. Engaging others is a continual process. The truth is those who participate in our ministry are likely being pulled by many [good] causes. The ministry purpose must remain top of mind. It binds us and reminds why we come alongside and give of our time to a particular ministry and group.

2.  Communicate passionately
While intentional messaging keeps the vision visible, how we communicate is equally important. It is true that every person has a unique personality and with that DNA comes how we communicate.  Some are analytical, some philosophical and others with heart. Regardless of your natural “language,” it is critical to connect with the members of your ministry in some way. When we understand the heart of ministry, the invitation to come along side speaks our own hearts.

3. Communicate often
Everyone suffers from short-term memory to some extent. When it comes to ministry, it is important to communicate frequently about the purpose and activities of the ministry. Talking about what the Lord is doing serves multiple purposes—one of which is energizing those involved in the ministry.  The frequency in which we share stories that only God can create also continues to unite and encourage one another.

These truths may not be difficult in concept but unless they are an active part of our ministries, we can become a lone ranger of sorts, and sadly, miss the opportunity to engage others in the calling God has given our ministry.

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4 thoughts on “Lone Ranger Ministry . . . Is There Such a Thing?

  1. You know, I've learned this the hard way, and I think other leaders may struggle with the same circumstances I have. I started serving smaller churches where my main interaction with people was on Sunday. When I moved to a place where I was working around a staff, it took me a long time to be willing to communicate in the way you're talking about, and to turn things over to others.

    • Great comment Brandon. I think that's one of the hardest challenges every leader has. It's difficult to intentionally share – even on an individual basis – our vision and goals. Involving others in the process is really the key in getting others to join the journey. The size of the church can reallly affect that too. Your example is a perfect one we can all learn from. Thanks for the post.

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