WE NEED EACH OTHER
The day was all about ministry: how to lead, how to develop leaders (and how to live with the leaders you already have), how to penetrate our culture with the good news of Jesus. I loved the challenge of the sermons. I loved mingling with other leaders whose ministry sets an example for mine.
But most of all I loved meeting with church leaders struggling to survive in the place where they’re serving.
It’s not unusual for pastors to talk with each other about ministry. I looked forward to the chance for that at the Center for Church Leadership Summit March 10 at Christ’s Church where I preach in Mason, Ohio.
But here’s what surprised me: the shy, slow way some other pastors asked if I would hear their stories. Because, even though some of their experiences were difficult, I could relate to every one.
Yes, it’s true our church may have larger attendance than where these new friends are preaching. Yes, our building and budget are bigger too. But those guys had no idea of the struggles and soul-searching behind any progress we have recorded. Their ministry challenges and mine in many ways aren’t different at all.
In quiet conversations in out-of-the-way corners, I heard their problems and shared how God and good people at my church had helped me toward solving some of mine.
And when the day was finished—when more than a thousand church leaders left our building to return to service throughout Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, and points beyond—I remembered why I decided to start this blog.
We need each other. We’ve all preached sermons on those “body” passages in the epistles, and we all know no Christian leader was meant to go it alone. But too often still we try.
This blog is one place where we can connect. Here church leaders can see their stories in mine and find encouragement for their walk by taking a few steps beside me.
Yes, I’ll be talking about church leadership in general. But I’ll also share details of what I’m dealing with personally as a pastor and as a fellow servant seeking to stay on track and show the way to a lost world.
I hope you’ll talk back—with questions and comments, even if you disagree. I’ll look forward to the online interaction—until, that is, we can sit face-to-face in a quiet corner to share the pressures and promises of ministry, like I did with a few guys here this March.
Watch for my new post to this blog every Wednesday.