Posts in Church
FIVE CONFESSIONS OF A MESSY PASTOR

I’ve served in vocational ministry for 20 years, but usually I try to talk people out of going into full-time ministry. Not because we don’t need more ministers, but because most people outside of ministry don’t know the cost.

I didn’t either. When I was ordained, full of a vision to save the world, I didn’t know the toll or the challenge. I didn’t anticipate a day like I had not long ago. In one 24-hour period I went from speaking and leading in public, to walking through death and personal hell with people I love, to celebrating new life with another couple whose baby had just been born. The emotional peaks and valleys were like the highs and lows of an EKG.

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THE MOST IMPORTANT LEADERSHIP QUALITY THAT ALMOST NO ONE TALKS ABOUT

To the list of qualities most often associated with successful leaders, I want to add one not often considered.

An effective leader is attentivenot only to the other leaders in his organization, but to people in general.

I thought of this as I reflected on Mark Moore’s visit to Christ’s Church a couple of weeks ago. We were challenged and motivated and informed by his sermon, of course. It was a great boost to all of us working through his Core 52 Bible study.

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THREE STEPS TO MUTINY

Billy Graham had experienced success as a Youth for Christ evangelist when, at age 31, he was ready to launch out on his own. In 1948 he met with three men who would be his partners in evangelistic crusades, Bev Shea, Grady Wilson, and Cliff Barrows. In a Modesto, California motel, he challenged them to take one hour, go to their rooms, and come back with a list of any possible problems that could sabotage their effectiveness.

When they returned, their lists were remarkably similar. Their discussion led them to agree on a set of standards designed to protect the integrity of their ministry. Their pact, although never published, came to be known as the Modesto Manifesto. And observing those guidelines kept Graham from corruption and scandal for almost six decades after that.

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EVERY LEADERS BIGGEST STRUGGLE AND HOW TO FIGHT IT

If nothing else will distract a leader, discouragement will.

And if nothing else will discourage a leader, comparing himself with others will.

Envy is the great disabler. And sometimes it disables me. Here I am, constantly going for God while the stress and the pressure of ministry seems never to go away. When I dwell on this, I’m in a turmoil that feels like it just won’t end.

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