Arquivo da tag: pastores

A batalha de Spurgeon contra a depressão

A DEPRESSÃO DE SPURGEONVocê vê a glória de Deus no sol? A batalha de Spurgeon contra a depressão

Tudo começou quando ele tinha 24 anos de idade. Era o ano de 1858, e Charles Spurgeon mais tarde recordou, “meu ânimo estava tão abatido, que eu poderia chorar durante toda uma hora, como uma criança, e ainda assim não saberia por que chorava”.

Spurgeon batalhou contra uma “depressão sem causa” toda sua vida. Essa “falta de esperança sem forma, indefinida, que a tudo obscurece”, ele escreve, “não pode ser entendida”. Lutar contra esse tipo de depressão, ele disse, é tão difícil quanto lutar contra a névoa.

Mas Spurgeon batalhou contra ela — com a fé. LEIA +


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Publicado por em 13/11/2015 em POIMENIA


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The Most Frequent Burdens Pastors Face

By Chuck Lawless

In my years of church consulting, I have spent hours talking to local church pastors. Much of the conversation revolves around church structure, vision, etc., but seldom does the conversation stay at that level. Pastors, it seems, long for someone to listen to them. They want someone to share their burdens, even if only for a few minutes.

Listen to the topics of pain I often hear, and take a minute to pray for your church leaders.

  1. Declining church growth – No pastor I know wants his congregation to be plateaued or in decline; however, the majority of churches in North America are in that state. A pastor may put a hopeful veneer on that truth publicly, but I’ve wept with pastors who grieve privately over their church’s decline.
  2. Losing the support of friends – Losing the backing of a Christian brother or sister is a unique pain. God-centered relationships are a miraculous gift, the melding of hearts at a level the world cannot understand. When those bonds are severed, particularly over matters that are seldom eternally significant, the anguish is deep.
  3. Grieving a fall – Pastoral love is not a guarantee against failure. In fact, even Jesus had close followers who fell into sin and rebellion. When our pastoral calls for repentance go unheeded, it’s difficult not to take that rejection personally.
  4. Sensing that the sermon went nowhere – For many of us, our ministry is centered around the Sunday sermon. Ideally, hours of preparation end in focused exposition that leads to life transformation—but that result doesn’t always happen. Few pastors have a safe place to express candid concerns about their own preaching.
  5. Losing vision – A pastor who has lost his vision for the church is leading on fumes. To admit that condition, though, is risky. Not to admit that reality is even more dangerous. Little will change until that pastor can honestly share his lack of focus.
  6. Being lonely – Pastors bear others’ burdens, but they do so confidentially. They share both the struggles and the joys of life, from birth to death. Sometimes, previous pain has made it difficult for them to open up to others. Consequently, they carry the weight of many on the shoulders of one.
  7. Dealing with unsupportive staff – Facing contrary members weekly is hard enough, but facing unsupportive staff every day is an ongoing angst. Correction is difficult, and firing can be agonizing. Some pastors simply hope for change while not knowing the best next steps to take.
  8. Remembering failures – Not many of us easily forget that disorganized sermon, that rotten counseling advice, that disruptive team meeting, or that hasty staff hire. Perhaps we can laugh at some of yesterday’s failures, but others still haunt us because we never want to fail God or His people.
  9. Dealing with death recurrently – Few responsibilities are as serious as officiating at a funeral. Even when burying a believer, pastors, too, grieve the loss of friends. Burying someone who was apparently not a believer is even more gut wrenching. Ministry amid such pain without becoming calloused is difficult indeed.
  10. Facing personal jealousies – I wish no pastor dealt with personal or professional jealousies, but I know better – both because of my own sinfulness and my pastoral conversations. Coming to grips with the rawness of our depravity is never easy.
  11. Balancing family and ministry priorities – No pastor sets out to lose his family. Few leap into the inattentiveness that often precedes adultery; instead, they almost imperceptibly slide into sin. One reason for that failure is their lack of mentors and colleagues who help them prioritize family while fulfilling ministry responsibilities.
  12. Responding to criticism – Continual criticism is wearying. Learning how to hear any sliver of truth in criticism while not growing angry is challenging. We can indeed be better ministers through healthy criticism, but few of us learn that truth in the midst of controversy.

I love pastors. I have been a pastor. I would return to the pastorate with excitement if the Lord so called me. Accordingly, I challenge us to pray for pastors today.



Seminary. You can connect with Dr. Lawless on both Twitter and Facebook.

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Publicado por em 02/02/2015 em POIMENIA


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On pastors and rabbis

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Publicado por em 28/01/2015 em POIMENIA


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Diez características de pastores que tienen una permanencia sana y larga en sus iglesias

Teología y Verdad

memberImagínese lo que pasaría si pastores permanecieran en una iglesia de manera consistente por unos diez años o más. Imagínese que ese período sea un tiempo sano en la iglesia. Imagínese lo que pasaría en nuestras congregaciones.

La duración del promedio de pastores en una iglesia (en Estados Unidos) es de más o menos 4 años. Es decir, más de la mitad de los pastores dejan sus iglesias antes de su cuarto aniversario. Nuestra investigación demuestra que la temporada de más fruto en el ministerio de un pastor no empieza hasta algún punto entre los años 5 y 7.

Abordé este tema entrevistando 30 pastores cuyas permanencias habían superado los 10 años. Y desde mi punto de vista, sus estadías en el pastorado han sido sanas y tiernas. Lo que sigue es una lista de las diez características de aquellos pastores:

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Publicado por em 26/01/2015 em POIMENIA


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8 Dangerous pastors who will destroy your church

Joe McKeever

“Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision … ” (Philippians 3:2).

You’re on your church’s pastor search committee? Good for you. It’s a difficult task, one that can make or break your church for a long time to come. But this can be one of the finest services you render for the Lord and His church.

At first, you step tentatively into those pastor-searching waters, testing to see if they are acidic (scary, dangerous), too deep (you’re in over your head) or turbulent (requiring skills you do not have).

Then, you go forward.

In your search for the next pastor of the Lord’s people, there are ten thousand things for you to know and remember, to watch out for and to stay away from. What follows below is just one of the prohibitions, a summation of some pastor-types you and your committee will want to be wary of.

By the way, this is what Paul was doing with Timothy, cautioning him against certain types who would impose themselves on the Lord’s churches.

When he said to beware the dogs and evil workers and false circumcision, Paul referred to those who would mutilate the church (think of wild dogs tearing into a defenseless victim), misuse the church (working their evil, which comes in all kinds of varieties), and mislead the church (pushing their false doctrine, in this case that believers had to be circumcised to be saved).

I love the way Beeson Divinity School’s Frank Thielman puts it in the NIV Commentary, “Beware the curs! Beware the criminals! Beware the cutters!”

All right. Beware of these preacher-types in your quest for God’s leader for the flock …

1. Single issue pastors.

In the political realm, a “single-issue candidate” has one big item on his mind, some change he or she wants to introduce in Congress. They are the abortion candidates, the big-oil candidates, the environmental candidates or the Tea Party candidates. There are pastors like this, men who have one huge thing on their plate and all their sermons and programs revolve around it.

A friend told me of a pastor under whom he once served. With that man, everything was missions. And in his case, it was one country in particular where he was always traveling to minister and taking church groups. My friend said, “Too bad if we wanted to do something for the children in our church, take the youth on a retreat or needed to renovate the fellowship hall. The pastor needed those funds for Guatemala.”

In most cases, pastors need to be generalists, not specialists. They are called upon to be students and teachers of God’s word, to deliver great sermons, to administer the staff, and to oversee a church that ministers to all age groups, that ministers in the community and touches the world with the gospel. The church needs to be evangelistic, but also mission-minded, Bible-teaching and good stewards. There may be a place for a pastor who does one big thing well and all other aspects of the ministry do not interest him, but chances are, your church is not the place for him.

Know whom you are getting. Bring a one-issue pastor to a church needing a jack-of-all-trades and nothing good will come from it.

2. Politically ambitious pastors.

In this case, it’s denominational politics.

I’ve known pastors whose driving force was to become known throughout the Southern Baptist Convention and be elected for high office. Why in the world any right-thinking man of God would want that burden is beyond me, but I suppose it takes all types.

The problem—well, one of many—is that he will be inclined to use the church to further his goals, even to the point of manipulating programming and misusing people.

The Lord Jesus said, “I am among you as One who serves,” and “He who would be great among you, let him be your servant.”

So, find out if that pastor has a servant heart, and what service he is now doing.

Before writing a letter of recommendation to a children’s home ministry in search of their new executive director, I learned they wanted someone with pastoral experience and administrative skills. In the letter, I pointed out that not only did this candidate have his degree in administration, and not only had he pastored several churches (and every church he serves as interim wants to make him their permanent shepherd), but at the moment, he and his wife were working with children in the inner city of New Orleans through one of our smaller congregations.

No one said, but I’m guessing this last detail is what clinched the deal. It certainly did for me.

What is the pastor doing at this moment that reveals him to have a shepherd, serving heart?

3. The predators.

Jesus spoke of shepherds who watch the sheep, hirelings who do not stick around when the sheep are threatened, and wolves who are the enemies of all sheep.

Pastor search committees need to know how to tell one from the other. (John 10 is a good starting place for your study.)

A shepherd lays down his life for the sheep, Jesus said. A hireling has no appetite for conflict, looks out for number one, is not devoted to the flock and skips town (or locks himself in his study!) at the first threat of trouble. The wolves are the ones who make the trouble (see Acts 20:28-30).

As I sometimes get reminded on this blog—which we admit is directed toward pastors and church leadership—the church’s problem can be the preacher. Of course, this is true. And when a congregation has a pastor who is the cancer, spreading disease throughout the flock, its lay leadership must rise up and take action. But, for our purposes here, we’re talking about a search committee trying to spot the trouble-making pastor in order to avoid bringing him in.

Ask a lot of people about the pastor you are interested in.

When you finish, ask some more. Ask references for the names of others whom you will want to call in order to have a full picture of this minister. Consider having a member of your committee who knows how to fly under the radar visit that pastor’s city and make discreet inquiries about him and his church.

Sexual predators are the worst kind.

If rumors persist about a particular minister you are interested in, don’t automatically assume the worst. Your committee should have as its advisors one or two ministers with vast experience—either a retired pastor or a denominational leader—who can give you his perspective and make recommendations, but will hold everything in the strictest confidence.

If, however, the rumors trail the minister from church to church where he has served, you will want to pay attention.

4. The combative.

Paul told Pastor Timothy, “The Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all … ” (II Timothy 2:24).

Your committee will listen to the pastor’s sermons and talk with him privately enough to have an idea about this. Then, the references you run—particularly with his former staff members—will confirm to you one way or the other if he loves a good fight.

A combative personality in the pulpit can be entertaining the first time or two. But a steady diet of war-making from the shepherd gets old quick and brands your church as a warmongering congregation (since pastors tend to make the people like themselves).

Is this pastor kind? Is he Christlike? Paul went on to Timothy, “ … but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition … ” (II Timothy 2:24-25).

The pastor who is always spoiling for a fight has no business in the ministry. He needs to bring himself to the cross and die there, daily if necessary (I Corinthians 15:31).

5. The immature.

Ministers who have never grown up tend to be quick to take offense, cannot handle correction and worry about their careers. Any criticism is unwelcome and the critic becomes marked as an enemy.

Many immature pastors can be spotted by their use of slang, by their adolescent clothing and hair styles, and by their discomfort in associating with people old enough to be their parents and grandparents.

In case anyone wonders, while I have not known such pastors, I’ve sure heard stories about them. They’re out there.

My observation is that anyone God ultimately uses in great ways, He first has to “break.” (Think of breaking a horse.)

Until a minister—or any Christian—sees himself as unworthy, a sinner deserving of hell, one who dare not trust himself because “in my flesh there dwells no good thing” (Romans 7:18), and throws himself on the mercy of God, he’s not much good as a shepherd of God’s people.

Has this pastor been broken? Ask people who have worked with him fairly recently; they will know.

In saying this, I’m reminding myself we were all young and immature at one time. I’m grateful to those small churches that took a chance on me (mostly, I expect, because they didn’t have a lot of choices, being poor as well as small).

Second Peter 3:18 is a good reminder for pastors as well as everyone else: “But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

The issue then becomes: Is this young pastor showing signs of growing, of being teachable, of being able to make corrections when shown something he got wrong? Do not go forward until you learn the answers to these questions.

6. The mentally unhealthy.

Now, poor mental health is a problem for humanity, not just one particular group. But you do not want in your pulpit a man (or woman, if your church allows women to serve as shepherds) who struggles with ego (either too much or too little), who is still trying to find his own identity, who has anger issues and whose fragile confidence always needs bolstering.

Such leaders are trouble.

Before telling us how the Lord Jesus shed his outer garment, took a towel and basin of water, and stooped to wash the feet of the apostles, John opens the curtain and lets us in on a divine secret. The opening words of John 13 reveal to us exactly how our Lord was able to do such a humble act:

“Now, before the Passover, Jesus, knowing that His hour had come that He should depart out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end; and during supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot to betray Him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come forth from God and was going back to God, rose from supper, laid aside His garment, and taking a towel, girded Himself about … ”

These four verses are worthy of many hours of our reflection and meditation. They contain a thousand insights, only two or three of which I have grasped so far.

The one big message, the truth that jumps out and demands to be considered, is that Jesus was able to stoop and serve in the lowliest position because He knew who He was, knew God’s calling upon His life, was on schedule with His life and had nothing to prove. Insecurity will paralyze us, but knowing our identity in Christ will set us free to do anything He commands.

7. Carnal.

I suppose this is redundant, since most of the above indicates a pastor still fleshly and not spiritual. But I’m thinking of one pastor I knew who always had an off-color joke to share, could always be counted on to find a sexual slant to any incident, and who was critical of other ministers.

Eventually, I decided that his criticism was intended to justify his excluding himself from his brethren, a protective device lest they find out his secrets. Only after he left that church did we hear that he was often seen at the race track making bets, and a restaurant owner noted that this preacher always ordered alcoholic drinks with his dinner.

When he left our denomination, we were not unhappy. When we found that another denomination had welcomed him with open arms, we were saddened. I hope they know what they got. If not, they probably found out quickly.

Paul says we will have the carnal (fleshly) in the congregations (see I Corinthians 2). These are disciples who need to grow and rise above activities and ways of their former life.

However, you do not want such a person to be your pastor.

Look for evidence of his spirituality. Does he read his Bible and pray regularly, and not just for sermon preparation? Does he love people and is there a humility in his life?

8. Loners.

Does this pastor have friends in the ministry? Does he attend meetings of pastors in his city? Or does he isolate himself from his colleagues as though he fears contamination?

Our Lord called His disciples to become part of the team of 12, then sent them in pairs (see Mark 6:7). When the Holy Spirit sent out missionaries, they went not as solo acts, but in groups of at least two (see Acts 13:2; 15:39-40).

One of the most reliable indications of bad mental health in a pastor is his isolation. Whether from a lack of trust of other ministers or a sense of inferiority in himself, nothing good comes from his self-imposed protective quarantine.

Pastors are going to urge people to come to Christ, be saved and baptized and join the church. They are going to tell the new disciples that they cannot live this Christian life in isolation, that they need the family of the Lord. And they will be right.

However, they must practice what they preach. As shepherds of the Lord’s people, they must work with other shepherds, learn from each other and encourage each other. The pastor who cuts himself off from others is revealing something lacking in himself and asking for big trouble. (In Acts 20:17ff, Paul meets with the pastors/elders of the Ephesus church. No numbers are given, but clearly there were several of them. If the Word of God is authoritative for us, we must pay attention to such insights.)

Eight kinds of ministers who can give a congregation big problems if the committee recommends them.

Get lots of counsel, search committee. Get a couple of advisors from veteran ministers in your area, men who are sworn to confidentiality, but do not necessarily know that you are talking to both. The line in Proverbs about there being “safety in many counselors” is dead on.

Do not fall in love with a candidate so quickly that you cut short your background work or refuse to consider negative information you are picking up. Talk to ministers who have served on that pastor’s staff in previous churches and to pastors who led neighboring congregations, and pay close attention to both groups, particularly if they are all saying the same things.

Keep the congregation on their knees interceding for your committee. You cannot do this without His guiding hand.


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Publicado por em 27/10/2013 em POIMENIA


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Pastores Rancorosos

Nós temos uma natureza muito difícil. Desde Adão somos implicantes, raivosos, rancorosos, amargurados, maldosos, lamurientos, mal humorados… Como somos complicados a partir do Éden! É impressionante a nossa capacidade de reagir negativamente às ações negativas e até positivas das pessoas. Nunca estamos satisfeitos. Agimos com desdém. Desvalorizamos o trabalho dos companheiros de ministério. Temos uma tendência muito forte para construir nossos ministérios sobre os escombros dos outros que chegaram antes de nós. Perseguimos àqueles que não compartilham do nosso estilo ou da nossa filosofia de trabalho. Gostamos de dominar, de ter a primazia e alijar os que não gostam de nós, os que não desejam nos ajudar no ministério. Tratamos os inimigos na contramão de tudo o que Jesus ensinou (Mt 5.38-48). Temos mágoas não tratadas. Estamos adoecidos e adoecemos as pessoas que estão ao nosso redor. Somos sisudos pela influência danosa da velha natureza que herdamos dos nossos primeiros pais. Amargurados e ressentidos, produzimos o veneno que vai nos destruir.

Fico observando o número de pastores que gostam do pódio, dos confetes, elogios e bajulações. Homens que não conhecem a simplicidade de Cristo. Que não se aprofundam nos evangelhos. Causa-me tristeza ao ver tanto ciúme, disputas, maledicências e politicagens em nossas reuniões associacionais, convencionais e ministeriais. Somos um grupo dividido pela vaidade. Não nos unimos para projetos comuns e ajudar os que precisam. Aspiramos e lutamos pelos lugares altos. Temos dificuldade em servir. Gostamos e fincamos os pés em nossas ‘opiniões’ e não no que diz a Palavra de Deus. Estamos longe da mansidão e da humildade tão vividas e ensinadas por Jesus (Mt 11.29). Causa-me asco ao ver tanta carnalidade entre os chamados ‘ministros evangélicos’. Tantas disputas por cargos em vez de levarem as cargas uns dos outros. Podemos ser inescrupulosos nas indicações para a liderança das igrejas. Usamos a nossa ‘influência’ e não a do Espírito Santo. Queremos fazer as coisas acontecerem em vez de deixar Deus fazê-las.

Esquecemo-nos de que ser pastor é imitar o Senhor Jesus Cristo, nosso Pastor Supremo. É dedicar-se à oração e ao ministério da Palavra. Liderar um hospital para pecadores. Ter seriedade no trato das coisas de Deus. Considerar a Igreja uma comunidade da aceitação, do perdão e da festa. Precisamos ser obreiros simples, bondosos, graciosos, perdoadores, catalisadores, piedosos, amorosos e servidores. Fomos chamados como homens comuns, muito comuns, para um trabalho extraordinário, tão sublime. Precisamos entender que ministério não é mérito, mas graça. Você e eu não somos dignos e nem temos competência para o trato das coisas de Deus se Ele não for conosco (2 Co 3.5). O ministério não é para se exaltar, mas para exaltar o nosso Senhor que nos chamou com uma santa vocação. Se estamos exercendo o ministério é apenas por graça da parte de Deus Pai. O mérito não é de quem recebe o ministério, mas de quem o possui e o concede apenas por graça plena.

O ministério pastoral não é para tietagem. Não é para o pódio, o lugar mais alto, mas para o chão, para o húmus. Ministério não se exerce pelo método organizacional, mas pelo estilo de vida de Jesus, o estilo do organismo, pelos Seus princípios, quando somos membros uns dos outros em profundo amor. O pastor não é um executivo da fé ou eclesiástico, mas aquele que foi executado na cruz juntamente com Cristo Jesus (Gl 2.10; 2 Co 4.10). O ministério não é nosso, mas de Cristo Jesus. A Igreja é de Jesus, que a comprou com o Seu precioso sangue. Não é ‘ministério fulano de tal’, mas ministério do Senhor Jesus Cristo. Nós, pastores, somos servos de Jesus servindo o Seu povo. Quem deve aparecer sempre é o Senhor Jesus. Aprecio João Batista que preparou o caminho do Senhor. Ele era apenas coadjuvante. Ele disse em relação a Jesus: “Importa que Ele cresça e eu diminua”. Este é o nosso caso. Nada além. Ser João Batista é um caso de morte com Cristo na obra da cruz. Como disse Paulo: “Não mais eu, mas Cristo” (Gl 2.20) e “para mim o viver é Cristo” (Fil 1.21).

Pastores que vivem destilando rancor não são pastores. Elementos que vivem detonando os companheiros do exército de Cristo não são dignos de estar nele. Aqueles que vivem criticando, agindo com maledicência, sendo maliciosos, dissimulados, prejudicando o irmão, exigindo reconhecimento, buscando proeminência, se arrogando do que fazem, não são dignos do ministério tão sublime para o qual o Senhor nos chamou. Os elementos que vivem destilando críticas ferinas aos companheiros de jornada não são dignos do ministério de Jesus. Que nos arrependamos das nossas mazelas, incoerências, críticas, legalismo, magoas, rejeições, ressentimentos e tantos outros erros. Perdemos tempo em falar mal daqueles que lutam conosco a luta da fé, do evangelho. Há muitos que fazem parte da quinta coluna, daqueles que lutam contra o Reino de Deus, contra o seu próprio exército. Estes irão de mal a pior se não mudarem de vida. É uma incoerência pregar o evangelho de Cristo e vivê-lo muito mal. Os escribas e fariseus ensinavam muito bem, mas viviam muito mal. Que o Senhor nos livre de ser rancorosos. Sejamos amorosos. Vivamos a mensagem preciosa, incomparável e insubstituível do evangelho de Cristo, que é o poder de Deus para a salvação de todo o que crê (Rm 1.16), e que perdoa a ofensa. Que Deus, nosso Pai, tenha misericórdia de nós.

Pr. Oswaldo Luiz Gomes Jacob
Pastor da Segunda Igreja Batista em Barra Mansa – RJ
Colunista deste Portal


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Publicado por em 23/10/2013 em POIMENIA


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How To Get Rid Of Your Pastor!

From the MinistryBestPractices Archives: 

I offer you this tongue-in-cheek and thoughtful post by John Roberts in it’s entirety:

Some time back, I heard about a church that had been trying to “get rid” of their pastor. Sadly, this is something that happens a lot in the American church scene. We get unhappy with the pastor or with something the church is doing; and then, instead of doing the biblical thing and prayerfully seeking to work out the differences, we choose up sides. Then, if there are enough votes to dismiss or enough people to make things really unpleasant, out the pastor goes.

It’s tragic, not only because of what it does to that pastor, but because of the broken relationships and the slow-healing wounds left behind, which often remain long after the pastor departs. Frankly, there are simpler ways. If you ever want to get rid of your pastor, instead of looking for votes or choosing up sides, try one of these five ideas.

Idea No. 1: During the Sunday morning message, listen closely and take notes. Look your pastor straight in the eye, and occasionally nod your head and say, “Amen!” Begin to make serious efforts to apply the life lessons you learn from the sermons. In six months, he’ll preach himself to death.

Idea No. 2: Pat your pastor on the back and brag on his good points two or three times a month. Make a bunch of phone calls to your friends and neighbors and tell them all the good things about your pastor. In a little while, so many more people will start coming to your church, you’ll have to hire an associate pastor, and your senior pastor will be free to leave.

Idea No. 3: Next Sunday, in response to the sermon, go forward to the altar and rededicate your life to Christ. Then make an appointment with the pastor sometime next week. Ask him to give you some job you could do for the church, preferably some lost people you could go visit with a view to winning them to Christ. He’ll likely die of heart failure on the spot.

Idea No. 4: Organize a ministry to call on the shut-ins and elderly members of the church, and encourage the pastor, as the early church did (see Acts 6:1-7), to devote more of his time to prayer, the study of God’s Word and sermon preparation. Tell him you’ll take care of the widows if he’ll take care of the preaching. He’ll think the whole congregation has gone completely crazy and start looking for another church immediately.

Idea No. 5: Get a whole bunch of the church members to unite in earnest intercessory prayer for the pastor, his ministry and his family. Organize prayer meetings in which you pray for the growth of the church and the blessing of the pastor. The pastor may become so effective in ministry that some larger church will gladly take him off your hands.

One note of caution, however: if you try one of these methods, you may find that you don’t want to get rid of your pastor after all.

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Publicado por em 30/03/2012 em POIMENIA


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