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Posts Tagged ‘pastor accountability’

The recent revelations about Bill Hybels from Willow Creek Community Church near Chicago have resulted in a renewed call for pastors to be more accountable for their professional and personal behavior.

There are cons and pros to this idea.

On the con side, pastors are usually independent individuals who resist being micromanaged by others.  It’s part of the appeal of ministry.

And if there are attempts from inside a church to micromanage a pastor, it’s likely that pastor will update his resume and begin looking for another position … quickly.

But I believe it’s reasonable for a pastor to be accountable to the official board and the congregation as a whole, and that this accountability should last for a pastor’s entire tenure in a church.

Here are five areas a pastor needs to be accountable for:

First, the pastor needs to be accountable for his time.

The first pastor I worked for was my future father-in-law, and he told me that if a pastor works hard his first year, nobody will question his work ethic after that.

Looking back, the only counsel I would give a young pastor is this: during your first year, show up to every church meeting and event you possibly can.  Be seen.  Let your people know who you are.

After a while, they will start telling you, “Slow down.  Go home.”

During my second pastorate, I worked a lot of hours.  The board chairman just happened to live in a house on the other side of the fence from the church parking lot so he could tell when I was at church.

One night, he called me on the phone and said, “I see your car.  Go home to your family.”

My guess is that story got around.

During my first ten years as a pastor, I kept meticulous records of the hours I worked … and I can’t recall anyone challenging me on my work ethic.

It does happen, however.  I know a pastor who worked less than twenty hours a week, and he was fired by the congregation, largely for being lazy.

But I don’t think that’s true for most pastors.

If a board wanted to make a big deal about the amount of time I worked as a pastor, I would say, “I will let you see my hours as long as you agree to pay me overtime for every hour over forty that I work.”

Or maybe I wouldn’t … but I’d sure want to say that!

Most pastors work hard.  I tried to work a fifty-hour week, and many pastors do more than that.

Just a side comment: should a pastor and church staff be paid for working on Sunday mornings?

I know some say, “We aren’t going to count our work on Sundays as hours.  Our people volunteer their time, and so will we.”

But I think that’s unfair.  Most pastors and staff members are paid not only to show up on Sundays, but to do their best work then.  You mean a pastor should preach his sermon for free?

I always told my staff members to count Sunday mornings as hours, and I’d do it again.  The workman is worthy of his/her hire.

Second, the pastor needs to be accountable for managing church funds.

I believe a pastor should keep a safe distance between himself and church money.  Don’t count the offering … don’t let people give you checks or cash … and don’t throw big parties and charge it all to the elders discretionary fund.

I usually had minimal dealings with church finances:

*I was given a ministry expense account and managed those funds precisely.

*I had input on the disbursement of benevolent funds.

*I signed checks … along with the bookkeeper … and occasionally pulled out a check if I thought the expenditure was foolish.

*I obtained church credit cards for key staff members so they didn’t have to use money out of their own pocket and wait weeks for reimbursements.

If someone tried to give me their offering, I’d lead them to a slot outside the church office that led directly to a safe.

There are two areas above all that will ruin a pastor’s ministry: sex and financial mismanagement.

I also believe that a pastor needs to let his church know that he is at least a tither.  It’s not a violation of Matthew 6:1-4 to let people know that you practice what you preach.  Whenever I preached on giving, I brought along my checkbook, and told the congregation that if anyone wanted to know how much I gave to the church, I’d be glad to show them.

Only one person ever took me up on it … my son Ryan!

The way a pastor manages his personal finances is usually a tip-off on how he manages church finances.

So to what degree should the official board or a group in the church know about the pastor’s personal financial life … especially any indebtedness?

Third, the pastor needs to be accountable for the church’s mission and vision.

The mission is why your church exists.  It’s something you work toward but can never obtain.

The vision specifies where you want your church to be within a certain period of time … say five years.  The vision always emerges from the mission.

Put succinctly, the pastor should be held accountable for this simple three-word question:

What’s the plan?

In my last church, I was blessed to know a woman who did missions and visions for secular companies.  She facilitated our process expertly.

I chose around ten people to be members of a Vision Task Force.

One Sunday, we ended the service early and gave everyone in the congregation a five question, open-ended survey.   The surveys were then distributed to members of the task force who read them and summarized their batch in writing.

We then held a meeting … summarized all the input from the congregation in writing … and assigned several people to create mission and vision statements based on congregational input.

We eventually nailed down our statements … had them approved by the official board … presented them to the congregation … and they went on all our publications.

And everyone had input.

That was the easy part.

After that, I had my marching orders, and needed to be held accountable for how well we were fulfilling those statements.

Sadly, in the end, my wife and I stayed true to those statements, while newer leaders ignored them and tried to take the church in a different direction.

That’s why we eventually left that congregation.

When a church drifts … or declines … it’s often because the pastor has stopped promoting the mission and vision.

In that case, he either needs to get with the program … or the church needs a new pastor.

Fourth, the pastor needs to be accountable for church staff.

Don Cousins was Bill Hybels’ right-hand man for the first eighteen years of Willow Creek Church’s existence.  Twenty-five years ago, he was hired to be a consultant for our new church in Silicon Valley.

One day, we were talking about church staff, and Cousins asked me, “So Jim, are you a self-starter and a responsible person who does things without being told?”

I told him, “Yes.  That’s definitely who I am.”

Cousins replied, “But Jim, not everybody is that way.”

I didn’t have any trouble being accountable to the church board or the congregation for my ministry, but I sometimes had trouble holding staff members accountable for their ministries.

What’s tough is that when a pastor is doing his ministry … like preaching … he can’t see or hear what the children’s director or the youth pastor is doing on Sundays.

A pastor has to rely on three main sources for that information:

*what the staff member says about his/her own ministry

*what other staff members say

*what the parents/youth/members say about that staff member

When I took his leadership class at Fuller Seminary, Leith Anderson told our class, “It’s important to take your time to choose the right staff members because if you don’t, it takes at least a year to get rid of them and then you have to pay them to go away.”

I had mixed success with office managers … better success with children’s directors … and not as much success with youth directors.

I brought a written report to every board meeting, and in that report, I wrote down whatever I felt the board needed to know about those staffers.

While I was accountable to the board, the staff was accountable to me.

I met with staff members as individuals every week … held a weekly staff meeting that I took very seriously … and always intervened if I was concerned someone was going off course.

I tried to manage … not micromanage … but roughly half the time, staffers just didn’t work out … and I usually blamed myself for their failures.

As long as the pastor keeps the board informed on how things are going with a wayward staff member, he probably won’t be blamed if things don’t work out.

But if there was a major problem with a staffer, I not only told the board about it, I asked for their wisdom … or else I was going to be held completely accountable for a staff member’s misconduct.

Finally, the pastor needs to be accountable for getting along with people.

As an introvert, it sometimes takes me a while to warm up socially, but once I get going, I’m hard to turn off, as my wife can attest.

I’ve always done well one-on-one with people, like with hospital visits or counseling.  And I do pretty well in groups, especially when I’m in charge.

And I usually did a good job with people who were a bit different, probably because I felt a lot of empathy for them.

But I didn’t have much time for those who were arrogant or who used intimidation to get their way.

And I resisted people who tried to use worldly wisdom to do ministry.

Every pastor has to deal with not only difficult people, but also people who disagree with him because they think they know more than he does about ministry … and those are usually the people whose complaints reach the official board.

It’s easy to hold a pastor accountable for how he treats most people.  You can watch him on a Sunday morning or at a social event and draw lots of conclusions about his interpersonal skills.

But what about those times when the pastor is alone with an individual and that person claims that the pastor mistreated them?

How do you hold a pastor accountable for those occasions?

_______________

The cry arising out of Willow Creek is that the elders should have held Hybels better accountable for his interactions with various women.

This is a really tough topic, and I don’t pretend to have answers for every concern.

Let me make three quick observations:

First, the primary person to hold a male pastor accountable is his wife.

If a pastor is flirting with women at church … or treating some women better than others … or singling someone out for special attention … most people won’t notice.

But the pastor’s wife … if she’s around … surely will … and she needs to let her husband know how she feels about it!

A pastor sometimes meets with women – alone (like in counseling) or in groups – and his wife isn’t around to observe his interactions.

In such cases, the pastor’s wife has to rely upon her husband’s faithfulness, or the observations of others.

One time, I asked two pastor friends of mine if a woman had ever come on to them.  Both said no, which was my experience as well … and my guess is that it’s the experience of the great majority of pastors today.

But sadly, there are many stories to the contrary … and too many pastors who have come on to women as well.

Second, the church board needs to respond quickly to any complaints about the way their pastor treats women.

My sense is that the elders at Willow did this when there were rumors about Hybels having an affair in 2014.  Maybe their investigation wasn’t as thorough as it needed to be, and maybe Hybels resisted being completely accountable in certain areas.

But the impression I’ve received from the accounts I’ve read is that the elders moved swiftly to deal with the issues they knew about at the time.

The official board has to do this or the pastor could be crushed by the rumor mill.

But … if a governing board delves too closely into the life of their pastor – especially in a megachurch – that pastor may either threaten to resign or start looking for a new ministry.

Sometimes a board can start investigating a pastor concerning one issue and find other issues that concern them … even if the pastor is innocent.  From the pastor’s perspective, why put up with it?

Too much scrutiny is also an indication that the board doesn’t trust the pastor … and if it continues, the pastor may choose to throw in the towel … which leaves the entire ministry in the hands of people who aren’t ready for that level of leadership.

Accountability?  Yes.  Micromanaging?  No.

Finally, a pastor should never abuse the trust God puts in him.

When Potiphar’s wife enticed Joseph to sleep with her, Joseph said in Genesis 39:9, “How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?”

Joseph was single … Potiphar’s wife was married … but Joseph felt that if he succumbed to her charms, his greatest sin would be against God … even though he also mentioned sinning against Potiphar.

Both God and Potiphar trusted Joseph with Potiphar’s household and his wife.  Joseph resolved to honor that trust forever.

Every pastor should do the same … but some strike out instead.

My wife and I once visited a megachurch three times.  The third time we went, we walked out in the middle of the service.  Something there was seriously wrong.

It later came to light that the pastor was counseling a woman to leave her husband and to be with him.  I have a copy of the lawsuit the couple filed against the pastor, and his behavior – if true – was about as depraved as a pastor can get.

It later came out that some people knew about the pastor’s behavior but didn’t do anything to stop it.

The Lord trusted that pastor with a large church … full of many women … and he abused that trust with at least one.

And if there was one, could there have been others?

“How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?”

_______________

Next time, I’m going to talk about various ways that a pastor can be accountable to the official board and to the congregation.

 

 

 

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A pastor friend recently send me his thoughts after an article I wrote on pastor-board conflict:

“I understand that the pastor has to have some level of accountability and I agree that this needs to be in place however; where is the level of accountability for the board??!!!  Why does the board get such freedom to govern as they see fit, and the pastor bend at their beckoning call?  When I first came into ministry 14 years ago, I was an idealist and wanted to touch lives, help as many people as I could, and set the world on fire for Jesus.  I still have fire for Jesus, but my flame for what happens behind the scenes in churches has grown very dim.  What I have discovered in my pastoral career is pastors who go into a pastorate full of desire and passion, many times must go through a board to get permission to do things in ministry.  The pastor may be the public figure, but the board runs the church with little to no accountability!!”

I’ve thought long and hard about this issue since my friend sent me his comments.  Here are five thoughts on this issue:

First, every church leader needs to be accountable to someone outside his/her group.

This means that:

*a ministry team leader should be accountable to a pastor … a staff member … or a board member.

*a staff member should be accountable to a higher-ranking staffer or the lead pastor.

*the pastor should report to someone … presumably the official board.  (If you want a miniscule church or a church split, make the pastor directly accountable to the congregation.)

*the board should account to another person/group as well, possibly depending upon who selected the board members.

When Paul laid out the qualifications for overseers/elders in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9, he meant for Timothy and Titus to select those leaders.

In our day, that’s probably the equivalent of the lead pastor choosing the board members, which seems awkward because then he’s choosing his own supervisors!

As pastor, I always had veto power over board candidates, and used it often, though I probably let a few slip through the cracks that I shouldn’t have.

But churches ruled by congregational government usually vote on or verify the board members in an annual election.  It’s almost always a rubber stamp because I’ve never heard of any board candidate being voted down.  Most people simply don’t know enough about the leaders who are nominated to reject them … a flaw in our systems.

Second, this “accountability system” doesn’t work in actual practice for official boards.

I served in eight churches over a 36-year period in churches that espoused congregational government.

*The pastor was always accountable to the official board.

In my case, I submitted a written report to the board at every monthly meeting for years and years.  I knew that I was accountable to the board for all that I said and did.  If a board member had an issue with me, they knew they could speak with me directly or ask me a question in the presence of the other board members.  Because I kept the board current on my decisions and activities, I never had major problems with any boards until my last year in church ministry.

*The staff were always accountable to the lead pastor or the associate.

When I had just one or two staff members, they were always accountable directly to me as pastor.  When I had as many as ten staff members, most were still accountable directly to me, although I later asked several staffers to report to the associate pastor … a mistake on my part.

*The board was accountable to the congregation on paper … but rarely if ever reported anything to the church body as a whole … which gradually makes them feel as if they’re accountable to no one but themselves.

Third, the lack of board accountability is likely a major reason why so many pastors are forced out of office in our congregations today.

Think about this: who should the official board in a church account to?

Possible answers:

*Some might say, “The board is directly accountable to God Himself.”

But then why can’t the pastor be directly accountable to God as well?  As Pastor Chuck Smith from Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa used to ask pastors, “Who do you work for … the Lord or the board?”

But knowing human nature, most Christian leaders would say, “Since pastors occasionally go off track, they require immediate human accountability as well as ultimate divine accountability.”

If pastors require some level of human accountability, shouldn’t board members as well?

*Some might say, “Individual board members should be accountable to each other or to the board as a whole.”

But then why can’t staff members be accountable to each other rather than the pastor?  And why can’t the youth pastor account to other staff members rather than the lead pastor?

This might work at first, but over time … if board members are only accountable to themselves … they’ll go off the rails … no matter how “spiritual” they are.

All too many do.

*Some might say, “The official board should account to the congregation as a whole.”

And I agree.

And yet … this is either done rarely or poorly in churches with congregational government.

Why is this the case?

In most of my ministries, I as pastor became the official spokesperson for the board in public.  So when the board made a decision behind closed doors, I either volunteered or was assigned the duty of sharing that decision with our church family.

Sometimes I’d do that during the announcements on Sunday morning … or through an all-church email or letter … or through a handout in the Sunday bulletin.

Much of the time, I was more articulate than the chairman in public … and I had authority and credibility than most board members lacked.

But by always reporting board decisions to the church as a whole, I made a huge mistake … one that most pastors make:

My actions did not communicate to the congregation that the official board was accountable to the church as a whole.

Let’s say that the board decided that all greeters and ushers had to wear yellow shirts every Sunday, and that they wanted me as pastor to announce that decision during the next worship service.

Even if I said, “If you have any questions or comments about this decision, please contact one of our board members,” many people would be more likely to approach me because I’m the one who made the announcement.

It’s like I had an unspoken pact with the board: “You decide … I’ll announce.”

But in my mind, that seemingly insignificant pattern sends a strong message: the church board is not obligated to report their decisions to the congregation.

And that’s the problem, isn’t it?

Fourth, the presumption is that since there is only one lead pastor along with multiple board members, there’s a check-and-balance system already built into board proceedings.

But I would strongly dispute this argument because without their pastor, church boards sometimes make horrendous decisions.

Ten years ago, I took a sabbatical for six weeks, and spent an entire month in Europe.

While I was gone, something unexpected happened at church, and two staff members went to the church board with a proposal that I would not have approved.

I wasn’t around to consult, so the board made a decision … the wrong one, in my view … and when I returned home, I had to try and undo the damage that was created … but my intervention-after-the-fact ultimately made things worse … even though I handled the situation as well as possible.

I’m not saying that church boards can’t make good decisions without their pastor, but they will always make better decisions with him than without him.

But when the board tries to make decisions about their pastor in secret … and without his wisdom and experience … their decisions may be based on business experience or raw emotion (think hatred or revenge) rather than Scripture or the church’s governing documents.

For that reason … and I’m just guessing here … I’d put it this way:

*When the pastor and board make decisions together, they have a 90% success rate.

*When the board makes decisions without their pastor, they have less than a 50% success rate.

Add to that last statement a couple of spiritually immature members … a degree of high anxiety … pressure from influential or wealthy churchgoers … and the feeling of, “If we get rid of the pastor, we’re in charge of the church now!” … and you can see how many church boards can slip into “termination thinking” without knowing the pitfalls ahead.

Finally, there are three possible solutions to the issue of board accountability:

*The board needs to make every decision in conjunction with their pastor.

Not the associate pastor … not a former pastor … not another church’s pastor … but their own pastor.

But if their pastor is guilty of a major offense, then it’s appropriate for them to meet without the pastor and consult outside Christian leaders – at least five, in my view – so the board doesn’t cherry pick someone they know will agree with them.

There is safety in multiple counselors.

*The board is accountable to a Conflict Resolution Group (call them the CRG) for the way they choose to handle conflict … especially anything involving the lead pastor.

I’ve made the case for this in articles over the past few weeks, but the CRG should serve as a watchdog concerning the process that the board uses whenever they engage in conflict management with the pastor, staff, or congregation.

*The board needs to report as many decisions as possible to the congregation as a whole.

In many churches, this is done on an annual basis through a verbal or written report, but this simply isn’t adequate.

If the pastor has to account to the board at every meeting – usually monthly – then why does the board only have to account to the congregation once a year?  Doesn’t that disparity lend itself to abuse?

If board members don’t interact with churchgoers regularly, they will be woefully out of touch, and in effect, minimize their chances of making God-blessed decisions.

Instead, the board should publish edited copies of their agenda before a meeting … and their minutes (edited) after a meeting … to anyone and everyone who wants a copy.  (Some boards post this information on a bulletin board, but I think it’s better nowadays to send the information via email to those who request it.)

Board members also need to publish their email addresses and let people know that they will read and respond to churchgoer concerns promptly.

The very act of being accountable on a monthly basis will keep board members on their ecclesiastical toes … help take stress off the pastor … and make for a more harmonious and productive church.

And if the board ever has to dismiss the pastor, they will already have a delivery system in place for reporting to the congregation.

There is nothing worse than a board never reporting to the congregation for a year or more … and then trying to establish accountability when they announce that the pastor has left the church.

This is one reason why all hell breaks loose after a pastor leaves: the board doesn’t have a track record of credibility with the congregation.

And what many, many boards do … sad to say … is to lie about the pastor … and destroy his reputation … as a way of covering up how badly they handled the conflict.

I’d love for what I’ve written to be the beginning of an honest conversation with my readers.

What works and doesn’t work for you in what I’ve written?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Pastor Phil couldn’t believe what he was hearing at the monthly meeting of the church board.  He had only been pastor for six months.

Out of nowhere, Don the chairman viciously slammed Pastor Phil.  Don claimed that Phil was preaching against sin too often … that several experiments in the worship service were colossal failures … and that Phil needed to spend less time in sermon preparation and more time in home visitation.

It wasn’t Don’s criticisms that bothered Phil as much as Don’s tone.  Don was implying that Pastor Phil worked for Don!

But that’s not how Phil saw it.  As he planned his time, he didn’t contact Don on a daily basis and ask, “What should I do this Thursday?  Study for my sermon or visit shut-ins?”

It’s safe to say that as many as one thousand pastors are terminated monthly.  My guess is that this question is at the heart of the problem:

Who does the pastor work for? 

As I see it, there are four possible answers:

First, the pastor works for the congregation.

In churches with congregational government, church members vote to call a pastor, usually on the recommendation of a search team and/or the church board.  But while the congregation may have the final say as to who their pastor will be, no pastor can truly work for the entire church body because everyone has differing expectations for their pastor.

Mary wants the pastor to preach through Bible books.  Joe wants the pastor to preach on contemporary social issues.  Linda wants him to speak on family/emotional problems.  Bob wants the pastor to preach on theological truths.

Mary wants her pastor to focus on home visitation/counseling … Joe on administration/organization … Linda on leadership/teacher training … Bob on vision casting/big-picture items.

Mary wants to become the pastor’s personal friend … Joe aims to become his advisor … Linda hopes the pastor will be her advocate for women’s ministry … and Bob wants the pastor to become his golf buddy.

I’ve only shared with you the personal viewpoints of four people!  Can you imagine what it’s like to pastor a church of 75 … or 150 … or 300?  The expectations keep escalating.  The larger the church, the less likely the pastor can ever meet everyone’s expectations.  If he tries, he will fail miserably.

Unless the church is composed of a handful of people, no pastor can ever truly work for the congregation.

Second, the pastor works for the governing board.

Whether they’re called elders, deacons, the church council, the board of directors, or something else, many churches expect that the pastor will work for the governing board.

When I first entered church ministry, this was my assumption.  I’d meet with the deacons once a month and we’d make decisions together.  In fact, I made few decisions without consulting the deacons.

But this arrangement just slowed the ministry to a crawl.  If I made a proposal, but only one deacon hesitated, we didn’t do it.  In fact, the more items I brought to the board, the longer the meetings lasted, and the less we accomplished.

The better way was for the board and I to agree on a job description and for me to report to the board in writing on a monthly basis.  But although I wanted to be accountable, I could never tell them everything I did … and I didn’t want to feed anyone’s micromanaging tendencies.

I believe a pastor should work with the board … not for the board … and that the board’s primary mission should be to encourage and protect their pastor.

When I worked with a board that said, “Jim, you’re the professional.  We’re going to follow your lead and promote your ideas and protect you from attacks” … the church prospered.

But when I worked with a board that said, “Jim, we’re the professionals.  You’re going to follow our lead and expect you to promote our ideas and protect us from attacks” … the church tanked.

Every church I know that is doing something significant for Christ’s kingdom is led by a strong pastor … and I don’t know a single board-led church that is growing to any degree.

Third, the pastor works for a powerbroker in the church.

This person may be a charter member … a wealthy businessperson … the church patriarch/matriarch … a large donor … a church staff member … someone who employs many churchgoers … an adult Sunday School teacher … or a former pastor … but this person holds the real power in the church.  Whenever the pastor wants to make a major change … and sometimes even minor ones … the powerbroker is consulted … even if they hold no official leadership role in the church.

It’s good to have friends.  It’s wise to listen to advice.  But I will never understand why professing Christians ever pledge allegiance to any unofficial/official church leader and let that person do their thinking for them.  It’s not only unwise … it’s just plain dumb.  No powerbroker can ever do for a church what a pastor can do!

Should a pastor listen to board members and powerbrokers?  Yes, he should try and understand their concerns, but that doesn’t mean he should automatically do whatever they want.

Once a pastor has identified a powerbroker, he needs to ask God to remove that person … the sooner the better.  (In case you think this sounds harsh, this is a step that all intentional interim pastors take.  No church can survive if it’s being taken hostage/blackmailed by a powerbroker.)  Whatever the powerbroker thinks, the pastor does not work for him/her … because:

Finally, the pastor works for Jesus Christ.

Jesus is the Head of the church … not the church board … and not a church powerbroker.

Every Christian church is ultimately owned and run by Jesus … and not anybody else.

*Jesus directly calls pastors into ministry.

*The risen Christ gives pastors unique combinations of spiritual gifts including leadership, teaching, shepherding, prophecy, discernment, administration, and showing mercy.

*Jesus leads pastors to engage in formal training in Bible schools and seminaries.

*He gives them ministry mentors.

*He allows them to suffer so they can identify better with parishioners.

*He certifies pastors through the ordination process.

From a pastor’s viewpoint, he works directly for Jesus … with the governing board … over the church staff … and never for any church powerbroker.

But in all too many cases, the board thinks the pastor works directly for them … some powerbrokers think the same thing … and conflict is crouching at the door.

Think about this:

If a church board/powerbroker wants to run off their pastor … and he is not guilty of any biblical offense … then:

*Which board member/powerbroker has God directly called to ministry?

*Which board member/powerbroker has God specially gifted for ministry?

*Which board member/powerbroker has completed formal biblical/theological training?

*Which board member/powerbroker can preach like the pastor … pray like the pastor … counsel like the pastor … and pastor like the pastor?

If the pastor ever capitulates and starts working for the board or for a powerbroker … he’s finished in that church … because a pastor must work directly for Jesus Christ.

What is the church about?

It’s about fulfilling Christ’s Great Commission to make disciples … baptize them … and teach them.

If a structure advances the Commission and expands the Kingdom, we should applaud it.

If a structure hinders the Commission and stalls the Kingdom, we should oppose it.

It seems to me that churches that have a strong leader and a strong preacher do a far better job of advancing the Commission and expanding the Kingdom.

After 36 years in church ministry, I look back and realize that when I was working for the board, the church stalled … and when I worked for the Lord, the church prospered.

As Pastor Chuck Smith from Calvary Chapel has often asked pastors, “Who do you work for: the board or the Lord?”

As for me and my house … we work for the Lord.

Who do you work for?

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