Column: Church Shakers and Kingdom Takers

Published 1:03 pm Monday, October 2, 2023

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By Pastor Randy Reid | Clanton First Assembly of God

We’ve all worked on a job with “that” co-worker who didn’t carry his share of the workload. A slacker who was only at work to put in the hours required to draw a paycheck. It is employees like these that make work harder for yourself and everyone else. These type employees are takers who don’t consider or either don’t care about the added stress they inflict upon fellow co-workers who desire to do a good job to make the company productive and more profitable. Work-place slackers make responsible employees work double and create hardships on the labor force of any organization. Unproductive employees cause companies to lose a lot of money due to their poor performance.

Before entering full time ministry, I worked in retail management. During the course of my training I was introduced to the Prato Theory. The Prato Theory is also known at the 20/80 rule. Examples of the 20/80 rule indicate that 20% of the population commit 80% of the crime. 20% of drivers commit 80% of all traffic violations. 20% of the people control 80% of the wealth. You get the idea. That theory rings true in most any organization including the church. Consider this. Generally speaking, 20% of the members do 80% of the work. 20% of the members give 80% of the income. 20% of the members cause 80% of the problems. Again, you get the idea. If the rule holds true in the church it means the church which is the only hope for a perishing world is slack in fulfilling its responsibility to carry out the work of God.

Church statisticians say that in any given church if you can get 50% of the people performing some type of ministry within the body you’re rating above average. So, armed with that statistic, I set out to see how my own church fared. When the results or our study were returned I was overjoyed. Data indicated that over 75% of attendees at First Assembly were involved in some level of ministry. I was so happy. Inwardly I was gloating, until one day the Holy Spirit impressed upon my heart this question; “How physically fit would you be if only 75% of your body functioned normally?” I came down off my high-horse and began to pray that God would stir more hearts in my congregation to stop being takers and become kingdom shakers.

In 2008 as President George W. Bush was transitioning the presidency to Barack Obama, the economy went into free-fall. Unemployment hit a high of 10%. Government leaders and economists were in an uproar. They were saying 10% unemployment was scandalous and should not be tolerated. Throw the bums in Washington out of office. However, it was during those days that I was thinking, “I wish unemployment in the church was only 10%.”

There are basically two types of people in the church. There are Kingdom Shakers who are doing their part and getting it done for God’s Kingdom. Then there are the Takers who do little to nothing for the Kingdom but sit back and coast on the hard work of the others.

May the church once again rise up with power and might and we each do our part of fulfilling God’s commission to take the message salvation through Jesus to our community and world.