After watching your pastor for years, and listening to hundreds of heartfelt sermons, do you have a sense of your pastor’s core values? Have you gained a sense for your pastor’s convictions? Would you say you know the general direction your pastor is headed?
Such knowledge requires defacto context and background. Freeze-frame any moment in time and we’ll be incapacitated; we’ll be unable to properly speak of that pastor’s direction, velocity or momentum. (Listening to one isolated sermon, on one weekend, makes it virtually impossible to adjudicate the pastor’s beliefs, opinions or values. Experiencing one message, in one moment, limits your understanding and is demonstrably inadequate for comprehensive assessment.)
I believe that most people never really know their pastors. This is not intentional on the pastors part but more the natural flow of leadership. Leaders have many people in their lives which makes it impossible for most to ever get to know them real deeply. In attempt to remedy that just a bit I did a series called, The Vulnerable Pastor. In this series I shared 5 characteristics of every pastors life. They were as follows.
- Your pastor is always being watched.
- Your pastor is weak and struggles with the perceptions people place on him/her.
- Your pastor gets deeply wounded often since his/her public life exposes him/her to more ridicule.
- You pastor is worried that he/she won’t make the difference he/she has given their life to make.
- Your pastor is willing to endure it all for a chance to be faithful to Christ and make a difference in your life.
This was a look at some of my issues specifically but I believe all true pastors in general. In light of this lack of ‘knowing our pastor’, next Tuesday will become ‘Transparent Tuesday’ where I will share a little bit about me that you might not know unless I told you in person. Some of these things will be deeply personal, embarrassing and silly. My goal is to let people know who I really am, with all my warts, so that it can never be said that I claimed to be someone that I am not. I’m James, follower of Christ, husband to Angela, pastor to LifePoint and terribly flawed. It’s nice to get that off my chest.