I talked with a great and wise friend on the phone yesterday. We were talking about exposure versus impact. It seems the driving force for many in ministry, especially for the up and coming, is the quest for exposure.
Here’s a few observations I have about exposure —
- Exposure is all about being known, being seen, and being accepted.
- Exposure always looks for a bigger stage than the last one.
- Exposure takes pride in the who’s who in its contact list and can drop names like little old ladies can drop quarters in the slots at Vegas.
- Exposure will use one relationship as a catapult to a more advantageous relationship.
- Exposure is event driven — the bigger the event, the happier it is.
Now let’s look at some observations about impact —
- Impact is all about knowing others, seeing others, and accepting others.
- Impact recognizes that the bigger the stage the greater the challenge to truly touch someone’s life who is in the crowd.
- Impact isn’t into dropping names, but rather into remembering people’s names.
- Impact will use it’s relationships to help others who need to be catapulted upward.
- Impact is experience driven — the great the experience, no matter the event, the greater the impact in one’s life.
The truth about me is I am both exposure and impact driven. Should I get a call from Pastor Brian Houston, asking me to speak at the Hillsong Conference, I’m going to say “yes!” Or if Andy Stanley texts me and says he wants me to share at this year’s Catalyst Conference, I’m there! But I recognize events like those, or even the opportunities I’ve had to be on both local and national television, are all about exposure. There’s just too many people in those settings for me to truly impact lives. It’s good for me and good things are accomplished, but by and large it will be about inspiration rather than truly impacting a life. A big platform does not ensure impact.
On the other hand, when I’m sharing in a one-on-one setting, or mentoring a small group of guys, that’s when I’m truly impacting lives. There is a reason why Jesus chose twelve in which He poured His life. Those twelve were impacted by Him and in turn impacted their world. Consider this powerful text about Jesus that shows His emphasis on impact and God’s reward with exposure…I’ve added my own emphasis:
Phillipians 2:5–11 (NKJV) Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, 7 but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. 9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
So how do we go about ministry? I for one am going to go for maximum impact and embrace the exposure God gives. That will work better than going for maximum exposure and never truly impacting people’s lives.
Categorized as Leadership