I travelled four hours yesterday to visit my dear friend, John Metz, who is in the critical care unit at Luther Hospital.
Before moving to Eau Claire recently, John and Phyllis were pillars of Hayward Wesleyan Church. We miss them terribly.
John had an uncanny way of finding things that were wrong. For instance, if we were off in our budget calculations, John would undoubtedly find it, and point it out. He wouldn't let me get away with any slacking, sloppiness or stupidity. If I'd do something dumb, John would show up at my office the next day for a "visit."
At first, it bugged me. I wondered why John was so critical, though I knew he loved me, and was only trying to help. Then, it dawned on me:
Companies pay BIG BUCKS for Quality Control -- and I get mine for FREE! John was my Quality Control Department!!
He taught me how to delegate authority (rather than tasks.) I have taught this same lesson, now, to many pastors across the country.
He taught me that an early hour spent planning saves three late hours of scrambling.
He taught me to start meetings on time. (Starting late rewards the tardy and punishes the prompt.)
He taught me that every donated dollar is important, and must be handled with utmost wisdom, respect and stewardship.
He tried to teach me the importance of long range planning -- but I'm still learning that one.
One day, just before launching a much needed building project, I got cold feet. "We don't want to get ahead of God," I explained. (My attempt to spiritualize fear)
To that, John replied, "And we don't want to lag too far behind Him either!!"