Church leaders at every level are asked to get involved in everything from Amway to dog sitting. And while there is nothing wrong with any of these things, a pastor must protect their influence as well as their time. For many of us, saying the word, “No,” to someone is as painful as sticking a fork in our own eye.
Are there gracious and wise ways to say no? For sure.
- I’d love to help you but my schedule just won’t allow me to take that on right now.
- To be honest, that’s just not my thing. I’ll bet there’s someone out there who would love to do that though. I’d suggest you talk to _______________________.
- I know what you’re asking me to do is important but what you need done is something that I don’t have the gifts or abilities to do. I promise, you don’t want me taking this on. I’d only mess it up to the point you’d have to fix what I broke.
- Because of my busy schedule, I’ve had to prioritize in a big way. If I were to take anything else on, I’d have to give up the time I have set aside for my wife and kids.
Please know, I’m not suggesting that you lie. Only use these statements if they are true for you.