I’m part of a group of church administrators that get together every couple of months. Today was our meeting day. I picked up my nametag, which, as of 10 days ago, had the wrong location on it. So I picked up another nametag, the one belonging to my friend and predecessor. Together, the two nametags, his and mine, reflect my new ministry reality.
It was a great reminder to me that in this new role there is both continuity and discontinuity. I’m starting new. I get to not save so many papers. I get to not do everything. On one level, I get to reboot. On the other hand, it’s still me. On the other hand, I’m still me.
There are days that we read things like, “today is the first day of the rest of your life” and “today is the last day of your life so far” and we are very inspired to be different. We wish that we could start over. But even if the outer circumstances change, we still go along. Just like the layered nametag, we are still us.
But that doesn’t mean we never change, we never grow. In fact, I’m committed to helping with that process of changing and growing. It’s just that the kind of change that lasts isn’t about changing the location of your office or your home, changing your car or clothing, increasing your readership or your salary.
What matters isn’t changing jobs, it’s changed lives.
For more reflections on starting a new position:
Make yourself at home
I know you’re busy – about focusing on relationships
Learning – about learning the culture of a new place
Starting – about the first day on the job
Left turn – about the heading to the new place after eleven years
Dragging people along – about position change in a 2.0 world
Experience – about walking away from the old office
What I learned from waiting backstage – about taking the position
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