The enriched pastor…

by Rod Smith

Pastor, take UP your life!

Pastor, take UP your life!

Enriched is the Pastor who…

1. Has the support, trust, and the encouragement of the congregation even when unpopular decisions become necessary.
2. Doesn’t have to combat or interpret a political minefield within the immediate leadership team and community in order to get meaningful work accomplished.
3. Is sufficiently aware and respectful of the congregation’s history, yet does not allow the history to compromise its future.
4. Is not surrounded by “yes” men and women who, in their inability to appropriately stand up to the pastor, have lost their capacity to think and, as a result of their misplaced loyalties, foster significant disruption in the community. [It’s PEACEMAKERS, not PEACEKEEPERS you want as co-leaders, pastor!]
5. Identifies the inevitable “lunatic fringe” existing in every community and can therefore effectively resist their agendas, ignore and expose their rumors, and be aware of their proclivity to disrupt and damage communities.
6. Is not engulfed by church members who use religious talk, money or threats to implement their will or their understanding of God’s will.
7. Is not too busy to have meaningful daily contact with his family.
8. Knows the most dissatisfied (loud, religiously aggressive, “conspiracy driven”) people in the congregation are usually those who are already unhappy at home and who are already difficult to live with.
9. Does not sacrifice his family or personal life for the sake of the congregation, knowing that success at home and church are inextricably connected.
10. Knows that self-care, self-preservation, self-awareness, are essential, in fact crucial to his or her leadership of a community, and that self-care, self-preservation, and self-awareness are the very antithesis of selfishness despite the chorus (in fact, it is usually the most “needy” members of the choir!) of persons who will try to dissuade him or her otherwise.
11. Knows that the essence of “giving up his or her life” or “laying down his or her life” for the sake of Jesus and the Gospel requires incredible self-knowledge, self-awareness, and self-preservation, in order that he or she may honestly, and with full integrity, make a meaningful gift of self to the service of God and God’s Kingdom.
12. Knows that it is as important for him/her to stay grounded in reading Scripture as it is for him or her to be able to see when he/she is being TRIANGLE-D, and of course, how to get out of it.
13. Knows that so-called “burn out” is not a product of hard work but a product of getting him/herself in the middle of other people’s unresolved problems and issues (or, to be perhaps blunt, to NOT mind his/her own business!)
14. Knows that morality and integrity are about understanding his or her BOUNDARIES and NOT about his or her KNOWLEDGE, or training, success, or the size of the congregation.
15. Understands the fallacy of empathy as a helpful or useful means to growing his/her team for a strong future.

One Comment to “The enriched pastor…”

  1. I loved that article. It brought me back 5 years ago, when I was still a pastor in a Lutheran parish in Germany. i was not blessed (or enriched) because a lot of the key-factors in my parish were different, and I wasn’t aware, that I didn’t know all those important things above. thanks for that. Now I live in Ireland, work voluntarily for the Lutheran Church in Ireland, love it very uch and try to earn my money by being a life- and executive Coach in Cork County. Find me under http://www.freshwindcoaching,com

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