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“Out with the Old; In with the New”

I was in a transition team meeting with the church I am serving and the lengthy discussion was around our specific assignment from God in the community – our purpose, if you will. There was much discussion of previous wordings used by the church and her pastors and several times, both older and younger people suggested it was time to freshen and update not only the focus but also the wording. A phrase that was bandied about in a tongue-in-cheek sort of way was “out with the old and in with the new.”

I appreciate the sentiment and believe in change and adaptation to the culture as much as anyone. In fact, I have often been too quick to change, sometimes just because I was bored with the status quo, not because it needed to be changed. I am reminded of that every time I walk out of our offices and past this little section of landscaping.

All winter long, I passed this area and noticed amongst the ground cover (I have no idea what this evergreen stuff is called.) shoots of plants springing up. Each time, I thought to myself, I need to make some time to pull those weeds before they take over the whole bed. I even had a couple of times where I thought, “Why doesn’t someone on the grounds team or the custodian take care of this?” I got busy and never got a “roundtoit.”

Fast forward to spring. It turns out those weeds were tiger lilies and hasta. It is a good thing I didn’t find time to pull them.  Don’t laugh. I never claimed to have a green thumb.

Sometimes when organizations and processes are struggling, we think “out with the old and in with the new.” Pull it up and throw it away. Not everything that is old needs to be pulled up and thrown away, though. There are some processes and programs that need to be thrown away for sure. Others needs to be freshened up, fertilized, and pruned. Some just need to be left alone to get healthy again. The real success for a leader is knowing which ones need each of those responses. I am working on being better at that.

One Response

  1. Just now reading this…good stuff!

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