The Gift In The Crisis

Written by Nathan Camp on Apr 28, 2020

The world has changed. I know that. You know that. With the rise of the COVID-19 crisis, it’s clear that things have not only changed, but perhaps they have changed forever. I’m not sure everyone recognizes that just yet. You hear people ask, “When will things go back to normal?” If you ask me, I think that is fundamentally the wrong question to be asking right now. I don’t think things are going to go back to normal as we know it; I think we are inventing a “new normal.” 

That doesn’t mean to say that I think we will always be in shelter-in-place or have a hard time getting toilet paper. In the coming weeks and months, those things will no longer be the most significant challenge before us. 

The “new normal” is not about social distancing, hand washing, and the great need for haircuts. The “new normal” for us to recognize as leaders is that we understand how we (and the people who follow us) have changed the way we look at ministry, business, and even social engagements. 

Take a look around for a second, and you will see the changes. Today, we define a meeting differently. We look differently at what it means to connect with our congregations, clients, and customers. We have developed (and will continue to develop) new platforms that allow us to do ministry and business in new and refreshing ways. We see getting food differently. We see entertainment differently. As believers, we see the new fields for harvest ripening before our eyes. As leaders, the best way for us to lead into the future is to understand that it is here. 

And with it comes a great opportunity. 

The truth is, there is a “gift” in this crisis. I feel for those affected. I pray for our country that this virus stops and that healing starts. Our current future is where COVID-19 is no longer a part of our daily reality. But, the truth is, through this crisis, God is doing something around the world. Hidden in the challenge, is a gift. It’s the gift of opportunities that have never been available to us on this scale before. 

I keep hearing about churches that are breaking records of influence and attendance because new people are able to attend their churches without getting in the car. 

I am hearing about salespeople who are connecting with their prospects without needing to get on a plane. 

I am hearing about leaders connecting with their staff virtually in meaningful ways. 

I am hearing about other leaders who are confessing that the “new normal” has forced them to be much more intentional in their communications with their staff, and their team is feeling more engaged than ever before. 

I was talking to a business leader recently, and he said the best word that describes his company’s success right now is “pivot.” The crisis has forced a closure of traditional revenue channels for them. Still, his response was not to complain about what is no longer available but to look to see what was now possible. They have pivoted their company’s product offering to meet the new needs their clients have, opening up brand new streams of revenue. 

What we’re finding as we look across the landscape of America, whether it be with churches, businesses, or social groups, is the ever-widening possibly of reimagining how we connect, do ministry or business, in life-giving and relevant ways. This is shaping the “new normal” and in many ways is giving us the gift of seeing with fresh eyes. 

The Apostle Paul wrote in his letter to the Romans that, “all things work together for good for those who love God and are called according to His purpose.” It’s clear that in times like this, as we look to God for support and answers and lean into His strength and wisdom, we will find that even in the midst of crisis, God truly is working all things together for our good. It is part of the gift of the hour. The wisest of leaders— and the ones I believe will come through this crisis stronger than before it started —are those that recognize that these times are not just a challenge, but they are also a gift, if we have the eyes to see it. 

Questions to consider

As we assume our role as leaders to navigate into the new normal, here are a few questions that can serve us in leading through these days:

  • Where is God showing me something new that I had not seen before?
  • What part of my ministry, business, or group is thriving in a new way?
  • If this crisis were to last twice as long as anticipated, where would the vision for my organization be bearing the most fruit?

We must ask for God’s insight and leadership in our ability to answer these questions and then thank Him for the answers. This keeps our hearts alive with hope that our best days are ahead and that in every crisis, there is also the reality that God is at work, with gifts along the way. My job as a leader is to see them and seize them. 

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Part of the gift many have experienced lately has been time to pursue the vision God has put on their hearts long ago. Their working from home, or even having less work to accomplish, has acted as a springboard for them to finally get started on the foundation for their church or ministry. 

At StartCHURCH, we have been amazed at the numbers of people that are calling our office to get started with the StartRIGHT Service, even in the midst of these days. They know that this moment is affording them the time and focus they would not usually have for these kinds of activities, and they are buying up the time. 

If we can be of service to you in launching your church or ministry, please give us a call today at 877-494-4655. We are here to help you in any way we can. 

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