Teamwork – There’s No “I” In Team

I’ve had the pleasure of being on many great teams.  At work, I have to work with other colleagues to get projects successfully completed.  At home, I have to work together with my wife to lead our family and to make sure our home functions effectively.  At church, I have  worked together with other small group coaches to keep our small group ministry rolling in the correct direction.

When I think of my favorite team experiences, I think about a mission trip that I went on when I was in high school.  Our group of teenagers worked together to build two stone walls for a Habitat for Humanity house in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania.  Everyone had to work together to accomplish this project.  Some of us dug the foundation for the walls, some of us picked stones from the quarry, some of us placed the stones into the wall, some of us carried water to the other workers, some of us back-filled dirt into the wall.  It took all of us to build these walls.

It’s an incredible experience to be part of a team that’s working together.  On the other hand, it can be pure torture to be a part of a team that doesn’t click.

Just like a championship sports team, teamwork is essential to a successful family.  The first step in successful parenting is getting on the same page.  The fact that you’re reading this and thinking about teamwork is a step in the right direction.  It’s also important to remember that there is no “I” in team.  It takes everyone in the family.

Team Stolpe on top of Mont Tremblant in Canada - Summer 2011

Here are some ideas to help you foster teamwork in your house:

1.  Hold regular team meetings.  Make sure you are all on the same page.  Provide an opportunity for everyone to have a voice and to share their thoughts and feelings.

2.  Cheer for each other.  Set the example as parents.  Your children’s biggest fans should come from inside your home.  Celebrate each others differences.  Take pride in your team!

3.  Plan.  Don’t let your family coast along.  Do things with intention.  Whether it’s vacation, relax time, extracurricular activities, chores, or whatever, there should be a plan.  As I like to say, “If you fail to plan, you should plan to fail.”

4.  Involve everyone.  Each family member should have a voice, and they should also have an important role to play in the day-to-day living of the family.  Jobs are important for each family member.

5.  Do things together.  Camp.  Hike.  Bike.  Geocache.  Shop.  Do yard work.  Whatever it is, find things that your whole family can do together.

What else can you add to the list?


Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work:  If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!  Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.  But how can one keep warm alone?   Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves.  A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.  Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ.  For we were all baptized by  one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.  Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.   Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body.  And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body.  If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be?  But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be.  If they were all one part, where would the body be?  As it is, there are many parts, but one body.   The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!”  On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable,  and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty,  while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it,  so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.  If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.  1 Corinthians 12:12-26

Tell us about a time when you had to work with a team to get something accomplished (it could be on the sports field, at work, in school, etc.).