Team Chemistry I appreciated Jordan Ellis’ willingness (October 2005, “Team Chemistry”) to tackle an often avoided issue and propose that leaders be aware of the “chemistry” dynamics and ready to take appropriate action.
Team Chemistry I appreciated Jordan Ellis’ willingness (October 2005, “Team Chemistry”) to tackle an often avoided issue and propose that leaders be aware of the “chemistry” dynamics and ready to take appropriate action. However, Ellis’ statement “mission leaders must set specific dates…to review with individual team members if they feel continuing the team is a good or bad idea” may cause more harm than good. No relationship, team or group can function well if they’re constantly asking, “Shall we give up on this?” While we need to acknowledge that things sometimes fall apart, a constant focus on that possibility will strongly increase its likelihood. Instead, teams should receive oversight by a concerned leader within the organization who, through “pastoral” interaction with all concerned, can be aware of problematic dynamics and can think creatively about possible solutions. In some “terminal” cases, this may include disbanding the team. However, even in cases of terminally bad chemistry, this is not the only solution. Another option is having an individual switch to a different team within the organization. In some cases of bad chemistry, we have seen this to be effective on our field. It causes much less disruption (for individuals and for the work) than totally disbanding the team.
—A field leader in SE Asia
A Muslim Theology I read with interest Jason Borges’ article, “A Muslim Theology of Jesus’ Virgin Birth and His Death” (October 2005), but came away troubled that the author’s only critique of the Western propensity to focus on an “introspective psychologically-oriented” reading of scripture was that it was insufficient for the rest of the world. Are such readings indeed really sufficient for the spiritual needs of North Americans? Or is it that we truly need to engage in a global hermeneutic that releases scripture to speak into and confront our sacrosanct Western culture?
—Rev. Darcy MacCallum, Intentionally Intercultural Churches (in cooperation with SIM Canada and the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada), Mississauga, Ontario, Canada.
Correction: Thanks to Werner Jahnke for pointing out that we incorrectly stated in our January Missions on the Web (114-119) that more people have died from AIDS than both World Wars combined. The death toll for World War II alone was over fifty million, double the number of AIDS deaths reported to date. EMQ regrets the error.