I am about to share 2 of my flops in ministry. I have many more but for brevity sake – I chose these two to focus on.
Good Morning Girls began in my home church in 2007. I was leading a Women’s Bible Study and felt like I needed accountability so I started a 6am club. 11 women signed up. Every morning we emailed each other at 6am for 3 months…but it was unrealistic for this group of moms who were nursing babies and waking with toddlers.
So we renamed our group the “Good Morning Girls” (and added in grace – no more 6am emails) but 6 of the ladies dropped out.
We were down to 5 Good Morning Girls. You know what this means?
The ministry of Good Morning Girls was born out of a failure. The 6am “idea” was a flop.
Going from 11 women to 5 is clearly a loss…had I given up on this idea based solely on numbers…the Good Morning Girls ministry would have never been born on-line.
6 years ago, when the ministry of Women Living Well was BRAND new and I had done no speaking outside of my church – the Outreach Pastor at my church organized a Health Expo as an outreach to our community. He invited me and Clare from Peak313 to speak at this Expo. We were excited! She and I went out on a snowy January day and delivered flyers at local businesses, restaurants, and Dr. Offices inviting those in the community to join us.
The big day arrived and I went to the room where I was scheduled to speak and got organized.
I had ordered pink Women Living Well pens and placed one lovingly on each chair along with my fill-in-the-blank hand out.
I had my podium ready with my 45 minutes of speaking notes, my object lesson and Bible.
Then I watched the clock as time ticked on…
right past the time I was scheduled to speak.
And the chairs…sat empty.
I peeked out in the hallway to see if anyone was coming –
I walked back into the room and wondered what I should do. I waited a few more minutes.
So I began cleaning up my pens and papers…feeling like a loser…I had prayed, prepared, and practiced but NOBODY showed up.
The excitement of the possibilities were gone and I was a wee bit embarrassed. Clare had people show up for her session…I did not.
Based on numbers alone – my first Good Morning Girls group was a failure and the first time I attempted to be a speaker – outside of my church was a failure.
I will talk about the issue of struggling with numbers in a later post but for today – I want to focus on the fear of flopping – or when you actually DO flop.
My answer – you pray. You regroup. You try again.
I focused on those faithful five in my original Good Morning Girls group. We emailed for years and then I introduced the Women Living Well community to the idea of GMG. I could not have ever imagined the way it would soar on-line!
God’s timing was not even close to my timing. The idea and passion behind it was right but it would be multiple years before I would see God expand the GMG ministry. And when God did – it was beyond what I could ever have imagined!
God clearly gets all the glory. He has done an Ephesians 3:20 here:
“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”
As far as speaking goes, I have a lot of anxiety. Making youtubes is a breeze – but speaking in front of an audience is a gazillion times harder for me.
In 2013, I decided to try again in my hometown and host a Women Living Well Conference.
In the weeks leading up to the conference, we sold out but then suddenly people began backing out at the last minute – asking for refunds. Even the night before I received 3 emails from women saying they would not be making it. Every time this happened – it rattled me.
I got anxious. What if the room is half empty – what if hardly anyone shows up?
Anxiety reared its ugly head.
Memories of past flops.
Then the morning arrived. The Women Living Well pens and hand-outs were at every seat…just like years earlier. The chairs were empty.
We were hustling and bustling around and as the sound man attached my mic –they opened the doors…and I was SHOCKED as women poured through the doors filling most of the seats very quickly!!!!
They came! They showed up!
It was a good day. But I can’t say that it was a success just because a lot of women showed up – God doesn’t use numbers as his measuring stick…God looks at the heart.
All God asks is that we follow Him where he leads.
Is He laying something on your heart to lead today?
Are you fearful because you have flopped???…ME TOO.
That doesn’t mean you should stop trying. We must remember there is a spiritual force – the enemy of God – that wants to stop us, discourage us and make us want to give up!
God tells us in his word –
be a light,
you are the salt of the world,
put on the full armor of God,
stand firm, and
Do not be surprised when trouble comes in leadership – I’ll write about this in a later post as well.
But for now, my closing thoughts, do not be afraid to take the initiative or try new things! I have been blessed tenfold by my efforts to serve God and His people in a place leadership.
When your idea flops – pray, revamp, regroup and try again! Do not give up!
Galatians 6:9 became my life verse long before I started this on-line ministry. The Lord has used it over and over to keep me going. I pray you will write it out and keep it near you for days when you are discouraged as a leader.
Galatians 6:9 says:
Do not grow weary in doing good, for in due season you will reap a harvest, if you do not give up.
Keep leading. Do not give up!
Have you flopped? How did you get back up?
Walk with the King,
** A special message to my GMG Leaders**
Have you led a group and it flopped?
Pray, revamp, regroup and try again.
Have you started a GMG group and half the women dropped out?
ME TOO! You are not alone. Keep going. My small group of 5 turned into a huge blessing…years later my personal group grew to 11 once again…but it took a looooooooong time for that to happen. Be patient and remember God’s timing is not ours. Serve those God has entrusted you today and let God handle the growth in His timing.
Have you thought about starting a GMG group but you are afraid?
I have lived that fear. Fear is not your friend. Let that fear drive you to complete dependence on God and intense prayer. I pray you follow God’s lead and in His time, He does an Ephesians 3:20 in your life too!