Is Less Really More?

by Ed Ollie, Jr.

There is one word that I’ve never quite become familiar with in my life. It is “Pastor”. Don’t get me wrong, I love my job. Watching and leading people into a passionate relationship with Jesus Christ is simply amazing. But, that label brings an immense sense of responsibility. In my job, nothing is ever done. As churches grow, the temptation is to immediately add programs, do more stuff, fill the calendar….all to justify your position/salary. As a culture, we reward people who appear to do more. 

Today, my wife and I have three wonderful children. In short, Marcia and I are in the season of zone coverage. It wasn’t always this way. With one or two, it seemed so manageable. I mean, we could even take turns in core responsibilities. Then, came #3. Everything changed. Dance classes, cheer, soccer, basketball, recitals, spelling bees, LIFEgroups, parent/teacher conferences, volunteering, etc. We began the drift toward doing more while resisting the desire to do less.

I love how Carey Nieuwhof says it, “Life drifts toward complexity, not toward simplicity”. So, what do we do?

< = >. Do Less. Period.

Last month, I was sitting in South Florida, looking at a majestic sunrise. I don’t know, it just seems like I can hear the Lord more clearly near a beach or large body of water! While seated, I began to read the words of Judges chapter 7. In summary, Gideon and his men were camped and preparing for a battle with a group of people called, Midianites. He had 32K men with him, armed and ready to fight. But, God had another plan. He usually does. The Lord instructed him to promptly send 22K men away, before the battle began! After further instructions, Gideon reduced his mighty army to 300 men! Buried in the action is a powerful promise in verse 7. It says,

“The Lord said to Gideon, “With the three hundred men that lapped I will save you and give the Midianites into your hands.”

Don’t miss this. The Lord was instructing Gideon that victory was in less, not more. How would you lead and/or fight if you knew that you had already defeated the enemy? Gideon, emboldened by the promise of victory, led God’s children into battle (Judges 7:17-25).

A couple years ago, I began to make some shifts in my life. We’ll talk more about that next week and how I’m trusting God to become an even more present son, husband and father. You see, I really don’t think more is an option. In fact, I think more is killing us. We need a shift that transforms belief to proactive behavior.

I’m convinced that life is better investing in fewer people for greater impact. It isn’t natural for me, but I’m committed to the process. As we shine the light on families this month, I’d love to hear your take. Do you wrestle with your time? Do you believe more is better? Share you story.

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