“Not My Job” Syndrome

I’ve heard that saying too many times. I’ve heard it from both church staff and from church members. That saying bothers me. It is an excuse to not do something that should be done but for whatever reason the person feels it is not their responsibility. I’ve seen it said by people looking at trash on the floor of a church or icy sidewalks – “the church needs to get it’s custodian to do his job” or when a person is in the hospital or shut-in at home – “the pastor or deacons need to go visit, that’s not my job.”


People who think like this tend to think like employees, even if they are volunteers and members – they are there to do a specific task, they aren’t responsible to do anything outside their areas, and they fear the consequences of taking action so they do nothing.


On the other hand, owners will often do things they’ve assigned to others (because that other person is doing something else); owners will take initiative and not wait for things to happen; owners will empower others and even absorb criticism because they know what they are doing is for the best.


Church leaders must expect all staff and all members to be owners – of the mission and vision of the church, of the church’s finances and facilities, of the ministries and programs that are the lifeblood of the church. God has entrusted all these resources to us – God wants us to act like owners.


Lead On!



  1. One does not have to be an owner to lead. God owns everything. God wants us to be good stewards and to lead people to Jesus Christ. Why? So that we will model our behavior after that of Jesus.