Spheres of influence

I’ve been watching the blogs of a number of different church planters and pastors over the past few months and have loved learning from everything they are doing, growing in, and struggling with. But I’ve noticed one thing … pastors with the same ministry philosophies all hang out together, read each other’s blogs and talk about ministry.


Wow. I know. That’s absolutely groundbreaking.

But here’s the problem. This means the leaders who major on communications and creativity share their ideas with each other and grow in that area, but they are all struggling with how to develop successful or meaningful small group ministries. (That group, by the way, is the main group who blogs) The leaders who are succeeding with small groups may need help presenting their message in a way that grabs and holds the people they’re trying to reach. And beyond that, there is only a very small segment of the online population that really ever mentions missions, community development or any other externally-focused events. 

Here’s the point. I believe that each of these focuses is good. The church needs strong communicators, people who can help people connect on an intimate level, and leaders who motivate and show us how to impact the world with the message and hope of Christ. But wouldn’t it be easier to do if we all knew people who were good in the areas we can’t seem to get right?

Three things have impressed me about the lead pastor at my church: 

He leads with integrity and transparency. He is who he says he is and realizes that his character and walk with God are his most important asset.

He hires great staff. I’ve never seen a more talented and passionate group of people in one place. Every person is an expert at what they do. He has done a great job hiring to his weaknesses and even hiring great people to work in the areas he’s passionate about. 

He gets great advice. He is always learning, inviting critique and getting advice from the best people possible. Even if it is something he’s been doing for years, he’ll ask for feedback. We grow when we listen to the wisdom of others.

It’s amazing how much the people we surround ourselves with impacts the effectiveness of our ministry and lives. Who are you listening to? Do you always agree? Sometimes that’s a great thing, but other times it might mean you need a little more diversity in the pool.
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Spheres of influence

One thought on “Spheres of influence

  1. AK says:

    Jonathan- you are so right – even though I will be the first to admit that my natural tendency is to shy away from spending time with those who might have different opinions than myself. The good thing about exposing yourself to that is that it makes you truly examine the reasoning behind your beliefs and actions. If you exaine things and find that you disagree with the person and really do believe what you thought in the first place, you will only believe it more firmly. But, you might also find that you agree with that person and have improved yourself by allowing yourself to be challenged. I hope that all makes sense. Thanks for making me think a little during my dull days at work!

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