If It's Not Measurable It's Not Manageable
Richard and I were standing outside talking over lunch at the close of our Vacation Bible School. A small boy got angry at another child who took a swing from him in the playground, so he picked up some gravel and threw it at her. We took care of that situation. Richard said, "Excellent results from VBS week!" We laughed at the seriously true observation that after a week of spiritual training, the culmination would manifest itself in competition, theft, rage and violence. Typical. At this point he jokingly reminded me of his company's motto:
If it's not measurable it's not manageable!Indeed! This seems to be the wisdom of the business world. But how often is this motto practiced in community life? Lots I think. We want our communities to be manageable. The only way they can be manageable is if every bit is known and measured. This is why it is so tempting to categorize people, to slot people in their "gifting", to have grades of maturity through which people must progress in order to get closer to the center of the circle. Which leads to the necessity of codes, rules, regulations, laws, mores, taboos and expectations, because it is only when someone measures up to something or doesn't measure up to something that it can be determined where they are on the value line. This must stop! We aren't a business. We are a family. Stop trying to manage it. Throw out the tape-measures. We do not know the hearts of people. So let's stop pretending. The fine art photograph is by my friend Jorgen Klausen and is from his Metamorphosis series.