Perry Noble just posted a great set of questions all church leaders should ask, so I wanted to share them here.
There is a danger in what a pastor does…and I have seen too many pastors get so focused on growing the church that they neglect seeking Jesus.
When I am asked about how I prepare messages I often talk about “the overflow.” The majority of what I teach at NewSpring comes straight out of what God teaches me. And I have learned that if God isn’t doing something fresh in the pastor–then He probably isn’t doing anything fresh in the church either.
My #1 responsibility in life is to seek Jesus…to read His word, to pay attention to His Holy Spirit…and none of this happens without me making time…and guarding it with pit bull intensity.
#2 – How’s My Family?
I recently read in the April 9th issue of Time magazine that 80% of pastors wives said that they wish their husbands would choose another profession! DANG!!!
One of the realities that a pastor must face is that the church is the only mistress that he can commit adultery with and not be looked down upon. The church will cheer the hard working pastor, the one who is at every meeting and does it all…and then that same church will throw stones at the one they hailed as a hero when his marriage falls apart OR his kids become hellions.
Pastors, you are the ONLY ONE who can love YOUR wife like CHRIST loves church!!! AND you are the one GOD has called to raise your kids.
I once heard a pastor say that his calling is the ministry…and that God will supernaturally make up the lack of time that he cannot spend with his wife and kids…and I seriously wanted to punch this guy…in the throat!!! This is NOTHING more that a man who is so caught up in needing to feel needed that he REFUSES to embrace Biblical responsibility.I often ask Lucretia, “Do you feel like you are getting my leftovers.” AND…she is VERY honest with me. There are times when I am encouraged by her response…and then there are times I am challenged to make some changes.
Pastors, we are NOT called to play it safe! One of the things we are called to do is ADVANCE God’s kingdom…and that means we will always be heading into unknown territory.
Do not be deceived…do not think that the larger the church gets that the easier it is to take risks. From a human point of view–there is much more to lose when you get larger; however, from the God point of view…we have nothing to lose…we said it was all God in the beginning…and guess what–IT STILL IS!
#4 – Am I Letting Anyone (or Anything) Rob Me Of My Joy?
The Bible says in Nehemiah 8:10 that the joy of the Lord is our strength…so many of us pastors lack strength NOT because God isn’t good–but because we have allowed circumstances or people to rob us of our joy.
#5 – Am I Faithful?
I am discovering more and more than I have one goal in life–to stand before God one day and be found faithful. To have loved one woman all my life…faithful. To have taught my children how to fear Him…faithful. AND…to have led NewSpring the way He led me to lead it.
I will not stand before God and answer, “Were you traditional or contemporary, emergent or emerging, missional or attractional?” I personally think that God could care less about the STUPID labels that we desire to place on everyone and everything.
The question that we must ask as a pastor is, “Am I being completely faithful to who God has called me to be and what He has called me to do?”