This morning I met with a group of men who gladden my heart and challenge my spirit! The elders of St. John’s Wash Park give tremendous support coupled with high accountability. At this monthly LIFEgroup gathering Elder David shared honestly about trust. Everyone participated in authentic conversation about what it means to trust God.
I love these guys! I need these guys!
Ministry isn’t meant to be a solo endeavor. Unfortunately, for many pastors, it is. A 2011 LifeWay Research survey said half of pastors in the United States experience loneliness in ministry. Rick Warren healthfully reminds proclaimers of the word that:
“Lonely ministry contradicts how God wired the universe. We need each other. You’ll find the phrase “one another” 58 times in the New Testament. We’re to love one another, care for one another, pray for one another, etc. Those references aren’t just for lay people. All of us — especially those in ministry — need other people to help us do what God called us to do.”
I would not have such joy in ministry without the help of others. Pastoring is more than preparing a sermon. Pastoring is being an example in speech, life, love, faith and purity. The fastest way to help someone grow spiritually isn’t giving them information. It’s relationally showing people how to live in a way that honors Jesus.
- You need co-workers. You may not have anyone else with you on staff, but you need other people to help you with the work of ministry. It can be staff or lay volunteers, but they are crucial. As a pastor, your job isn’t to do ministry — but to equip the saints for the work of the ministry. You can’t do all the ministry God has called your church to do on your own.
- You need friends. You also need people you can confide in — people who care about you and your ministry. I suggest you have some other pastors in your life as friends because they can better understand your world.
- You need elders. The bible is clear about a call for elders to partner in caring for the flock and the pastor. In this high trust environment the church is ever better equipped for living out what God has called us to do: equipping the people of God to live out their gifts to God’s glory and for the loving of all people!
Thanks be to God!