DMin, Leadership and Global Perspectives: Crafting Ministry in an Interconnected World

Napkin Planning

Written by: on May 23, 2013

Back of the Napkin Exercise

I am reading Back of the Napkin by Dan Roam. He encourages organizations to solve problems through simple drawings.

The problem that I am attempting to solve is to increase the effectiveness of the worship experience on Sunday. We presently have two separate teams with little crossover. They both have distinctive styles with strengths and weaknesses. We would like for them to interact more with each other. We also would like to keep the environment of worship closer to our core values and not leave the selection and style of worship music up to the leaders themselves. This would include the following four elements gleaned from Sally Morgenthaler’s book Worship Evangelism:

Nearness:  A sense of God’s Presence

            We worship Him in spirit and in truth with heart felt praise, exalting God for who He is and what He has done.

Knowledge:  Worship centered on Christ and the Word

            We want to encourage each other to know who it is we worship, really understanding the gospel message and the God who is at the center of it.

3)   Vulnerability:  Opening up to God.

            We seek to grow in our openness to know God at the most honest and intimate level.

4)   Interaction:  Participating in a relationship with God and others. 

            We will constantly be looking for ways to help each other express our worship to Him.

Here is a “Back of the Napkin” Drawing to present the process.

My first attempt looked like this:



Too complicated!

But here is our process now:

First we see the two teams with little interaction, then a crossover. This would happen by having the singers from group B join group A on a regular basis and visa-versa.



We would have a joint monthly meeting together. Then meeting with staff weekly


The overall goal is to create an environment where encountering God is encouraged and the focus is on Him and not us. This will take some re-working because we have a consumer mindset that is our default.

So we plan to add an interactive creative person to help this happen both with the music and message. Also to add one person on Sundays who will rally everyone for prayer before the service. We feel and extended time or prayer that goes beyond asking God to bless us will shape us to “bring” that atmosphere into our worship leading.


Over all this has been a stimulating and thought provoking process. Implementing and presenting this to the teams is still to happen. We have learned that it is easy to get bogged down in complexity, even in a small church. Keeping things simple and easily communicated is so vital. We want to preserve the sense of love and unity. We need continue to organize as we grow to increase our awareness of God’s presence in our midst.

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