DON'T PANIC

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“It will be fine. No one will really even know it is gone. ”

Those are the words I said before cancelling a software service that our worship bands used to push chord charts to iPads. It was a great service, but just hadn’t been used enough for the money we were spending. Most of our people don’t own iPads, so we were still printing a bunch of chord charts each week. I expected that a only a few of us would even notice the dropped service. More importantly, the money saved was needed for another software service that we are beginning to use around the Seven Mile Road offices.

Then the temperature reached 90 degrees in Boston last Sunday. Our worship space is not air conditioned, so the windows were open and you can imagine the prayers for a cool breeze.

The breeze did come … in the middle of a song, my paper chord chart flew off of my music stand and landed on the floor. Lyrics face down and eight feet from where I needed them, I was stuck. A worship leader with no words or music.

And I was the one who put myself in this position.

I can’t tell you how many people noticed the paper flying through the air like a poorly constructed airplane while they picked up the communion elements, but I can tell you that three different people asked me later, “Are you going to get the chord charts back on your iPad again after, you know, your chord chart blew away?”

The quick and easy reaction would be to reverse my decision. After all, it went poorly in the short term and I was made to look a little foolish (and cheap!).

Still I don’t intend to change my decision. I don’t intend to panic.

It’s my responsibility to assess our needs and manage our resources well. My reasons for cutting the service still stand. It doesn’t make sense that good reasons would simply blow away like a piece of paper (see what I did there?). Many people will want to fade from a good decision when something bad happens, even if it is a fluke. As you lead your people, don’t panic.

Think hard. Plan hard. Make a decision. Then, don’t panic.

Photo used by Creative Commons license courtesy of Isaac Z. Schleuter.