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When it’s worth doing poorly ...

If it’s worth doing...

“If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing poorly,” Aaron Luse said from the podium, sounding very authoritative.

I did a double-take. I must have misheard, I thought. But  I hadn’t. I knew I hadn’t. And then Aaron went on to explain such a contrary-to-the-accepted-norm statement — and it actually started making sense. He admitted that it wasn’t his idea but one that another missionary sold him on. And trust me, you’ll be agreeing with Aaron after you read this. It really does makes sense — at least it does in the light of discipleship.

… it’s worth doing poorly...

... it's worth doing poorly...

“We were meeting as a group of believers and beginning to teach the Patpatar about prayer,” Aaron said. “We wanted them to really remember these prayer requests, so I would write the prayer requests on the chalkboard, and I could write fairly fast.

“But a fellow missionary challenged me. He said, ‘If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing poorly.’”

Does that make sense to you? It didn’t make sense to Aaron immediately, but he came to see that the missionary was right.

“I knew I could do it better. I could go up and do it faster. But was it worth doing? Was it worth the time and effort to see them start to take that over? Was it worth the effort so that they, at the same time, could be writing it in their journals? Is it something that we wanted to start with them that they could continue?”

The answer to all those questions was an emphatic “yes”! They wanted the Patpatar to own it, but in order to own it, they needed to be the ones up there writing it on the board. Even if initially they did it painstakingly slowly. Even if initially they did it poorly.

… if you want a thriving church.

... if you want a thriving church.

If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing poorly. This concept would trickle into discipleship and become part of leadership development among the Patpatar.

Both discipleship and leadership development are about more than just being taught. It’s a process. There’s hands-on involvement. And sometimes there’s just practicing until you get it right — whether you’re reading or writing or teaching.

If the end result that we desire is a thriving church, then we need to step back. We need to let them do it poorly. Because that’s how they learn. That’s how we learn. That’s how we mature, not just as people, but as a church. Pray for the Patpatar church. It isn’t perfect, but it’s a maturing, thriving church.