Embrace: accept or support (a belief, theory, or change) willingly and enthusiastically.
I recently read Rick Warren's devotional, Embrace What God Is Doing. In this post, Warren writes:
“I chose the word ‘embrace’ intentionally. Why? Because ‘embrace’ means more than to just agree with something or to grudgingly accept it. Embrace means to be content with it—or even love it! You don’t embrace things you don’t love. God wants you to embrace the new things he does.”
I love that he used “embrace” and “intentionally” in the same sentence. (Intentional has been my mantra for the past 14 years.) But, more than that, I was compelled by the following sentence: “You don’t embrace things you don’t love.”
Embracing the Problem
Several months ago, I challenged our team to identify the problem we are trying to address and solve with our offerings. I have read repeatedly in the past 12 months that to truly be successful in your endeavors, you need to fall in love with the problem, not the solution.
This rocked me in 2022. I have always been a problem solver. I immediately want to jump to the solution even before I fully understand the problem. That may sound so basic to you, but I tend to be a slower learner regarding the obvious. I am too busy finding solutions, if you get my drift.
Our team took about a month to ponder what our problem was. We had myriad ideas and phrases. We fixated on a word or two until we had the breakthrough we needed.
On that journey, we faced several critical realities that helped lead us to this phrase and the ultimate problem we were trying to meet. For example, we do not provide software; we offer efficiency solutions.
The Problem Smart Church Solutions Has Fallen In Love With
So, without further ado, here it is: Most churches struggle to embrace the need (how/why) to care for (steward) their facilities.
There is that word again — embrace. The problem we identified is not a knowledge issue but rather an embracing one.
- Many churches know they have staffing issues
- Many know they need to care for and steward their facilities
- All churches know they have expenses to address
- Most churches know there is deferred maintenance
- Many churches grasp the inevitability of capital renewals
It is important to note that there is a difference between knowing things and embracing them. For instance, I know I should work out regularly. But if I don’t actually take action, what good is knowing? I know I replace the HVAC filters quarterly (at least). But if I don’t, Lord have mercy.
Our team has fallen in love with this problem, not to use it as a clever sales pitch or a marketing ploy. This is a real issue in the church world, and we believe that God has called our team for such a time as this.
Will you join our team in embracing the need to steward the facilities God has entrusted to us?