As a pastor it can seem noble and even Biblical to try to be all things to all men. The apostle Paul even said as much in his letter to the church in Corinth.
“19 For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. 20 To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law that I might win those under the law. 21 To those outside the law I became as one outside the law that I might win those outside the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. 23 I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings.” 1 Corinthians 9:19-23
But what if the expectations we are placing on ourselves are becoming the source of our stress and anxiety? What if we were never meant to be all things to all men? What if we were just meant to be exactly...
Can I make a confession? I’m not naturally a “people” person, which is unfortunate since I work in ministry, and ministry is all about serving people. It’s something I have to be aware of and something I have to work on. Jesus didn’t have this problem. Jesus seemed to be the most “people” person to ever walk this Earth, and we see it in how he leads.
Wherever Jesus was, crowds found him. On multiple occasions Jesus left one area to draw away from the crowds only to be followed to the next town. His influence literally changed the world.
The fame and popularity that so many leaders seek today Jesus accomplished 2,000 year ago without the use of TV, radio, newspapers, or the Internet. Let that sink in for a moment.
It truly was amazing.
You and I will never come close to having the influence of Jesus, but I think there are still some important leadership lessons we can learn.
Most small town churches are trying to do too much. In reality, you really only need to be good at about five things, and I would argue you could get by with being really good at three of them. For many years the church I serve has offered a great kid’s ministry, a great worship experience, and guest services that make guests feel like family. Throughout the years we’ve always grown in attendance, despite struggling to get groups going at our church and being even worse at missions. However, I think if we did all five of these well, we’d see even greater growth, and I believe you would as well. So, let’s take a look at each one.
If you’re looking to reach young families, kid’s ministry is the most important ministry in your church. Unfortunately, this is one of the biggest struggles of the small town and rural church, and it doesn’t have to be. You can do kid’s ministry well with a small budget and even a small number of...