What do you think

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by bobbyd, Jan 5, 2005.

  1. bobbyd

    bobbyd
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    Here's my situation, i've been at a church for a little over 6 months now and i have had time to evaluate what is basically "broken", as well as develop some possible scenarios to take care of these situations; in a lot of cases is requires change.
    I have a core group of older folks with 2 of them serving as deacons that holler, kick and scream everytime i bring up any idea that requires change and refuse to see it through.
    Would it be wrong for me to question why i am here as pastor if they are not going to follow my leadership and even question them whether or not i need to be their pastor?

    I know that this is a very touchy situation, and i have often read that you should never threaten to leave...am i crossing that line?

    Thanks
    bobbyd
     
  2. TaterTot

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    hmm... tough situation. I have read (and it has proven to be true for us) that a pastor doesnt actually BECOME the pastor until he has been there for at least 2-3 years. They dont fully trust you yet. WHat has worked for us is to have discussion about the problems, and if it sounds to them like it was THEIR idea instead of the new preacher who "just wants to change the way we do things", it will be accepted far quicker. So if you can prod a discussion in a certain way to where they "get" the idea, then praise them for it, there ya go! I know its a sticky situation to be in, but I think ya ought to give it a little time. Just my opinion! [​IMG]

    Oh, and if you threaten/offer to leave, they may take you up on it. I wouldn't unless you feel God leading you elsewhere.
     
  3. PastorSBC1303

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    You have to give it time, and 6 months is no where near long enough to determine that. I think you should be at a church for atleast a year before you even consider any major changes. You have to give people time to get to know you and trust you as the new preacher. More than likely they have been burned by other pastors who came and went in a quick time. You have to build trust. And it is not going to happen in 6 months at most places. I think way too many pastors come in with their guns full of bullets, they fire them off and expect every one to follow and with people it just is not going to happen. Now if you commit to staying and working through this stuff, then you are going to see some change when trust has been built.
     
  4. go2church

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    Would have to agree with what has been already said, 6 months just isn't long enough to either make the assessment or the correction. My guess is that in another 6 months, you might even find different problems that will require totally differnt approaches then you are thinking of right now. Give it more time and earn the right to be heard. In most cases, churches will call you to be their pastor but won't you actually be their pastor for a couple of years. Most of those older folks were there before you got there and plan on being there whenever you leave.
     
  5. USN2Pulpit

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    I'm just under two years, and finding out it's not quite enough either! But by this time, some have come on board, but others stubbornly hang on to the past. I made the decision to lead them from "just in front" instead of "way out in front."
     
  6. Pastor_Bob

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    I've been at my church for 4 1/2 years now. We are running 85 - 90 folks on Sunday morning. I followed the previous pastor who had been here for 25 years. The former pastor is still a member of the church and is in attendance every service. He's been a blessing and not a hindrance.

    When I first came, the changes I made were small, subtle changes. I didn't check with the deacons, I made the changes that I thought were necessary.

    The key is that I didn't exploit those changes. I didn't get in the pulpit and announce, "Perhaps you've noticed one of the changes I made. This needed to be done a long time ago..." Rather, I simply made the changes and went about my business as if that were the way it had always been done.
     
  7. amen_corner

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    Someone told me it takes 7 years before they call you pastor and mean it. Trust takes time...more time than most of us are willing to spend. As they say, pay now and play later. Or should that be pray now?
     
  8. USN2Pulpit

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    True - churches need pastors that will persevere. Only how long does one persevere in a bad situation? We really have to lean on God (instead of our own understanding) don't we!
     
  9. TaterTot

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    We have been at our church for 5 years and its just now that we are really "accepted". They still tell us often that they are afraid we will leave. But we arent planning on it [​IMG]
     
  10. Hardsheller

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    Take a deep breath. File all your pet projects. Preach, Listen and do 1 (ONE) little thing different this first year.

    If after a year they discover you're not going to hurt them they might let you stay another year.
     
  11. PastorSBC1303

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    Hardsheller: good advice! Too many times guys get caught up in the challenge of going some place new and the grass always seems greener some place else. However we must keep in mind that if the grass was so green at this new place, why did the last guy leave? Perseverance and prayer are a huge key here.

    I was given the advice, and I think it is good advice, that I should never go to a pastorate that I was not prepared to spend the rest of my life as their pastor.
     
  12. blackbird

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    bobbyd---welcome to the wonderful world of pastoring---the Book of Isaiah says, "All we like sheep have gone astray. Every one has turned to his own way"---that just about covers baptist life, doesn't it?? 150 souls in attendence=150 different ways of lookin' at the same "bobwire" fence!!!

    When I started pastoring 16 years ago--I ran into a "teeny" problem! Seems a "hen" in the church and I had a little disagreement concernin' the church's hotwater heater!!!(can you believe that?? The "nerve" of her!!) Anyway---she wanted it turned off during the week when noone was around---I wanted it left on!! After church on Sunday nite---she'd go in the "Breaker room" and flip the switch---well, on Monday---I'd go back in and flip the switch back on---so that on Sunday when she'd go in to "flip it"---it was already on!!!!

    Well, we butted horns over the issue!! I tried to explain to her---it takes more energy to heat 60 gallons of ice cold water to 140 degrees---than it does to just let it run continuously---well, she didn't see it my way!!

    I went into a deacon's meeting---

    "Preacher! We hear you've locked horns with the sistuuuuua(sister)!!"

    "Here's how we handle it---we'd rather pay just a little extra on our gas bill to heat up a tank of cold water---than to hear her gripe and nag and moan and complain!!"

    Moral of the story---it just ain't worth a move in the middle of midnite over a hotwater heater breaker switch being turned off or on---if I'm gonna get fired---I want it to be worth it!!!
     
  13. Jensen

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    blackbird....interesting - don't put yourself in "hotwater!"

    PastorSBC1303 brought up something I would like commented on. He said, "Too many times guys get caught up in the challenge of going some place new and the grass always seems greener some place else. However we must keep in mind that if the grass was so green at this new place, why did the last guy leave? Perseverance and prayer are a huge key here."

    My question is this: Should or do pastors leave churches only when things get rough? Or only when the grass looks greener on the other side?

    Maybe my question should be more like - Is it God who moves a pastor or the pastor that moves the pastor? If it is God, then how does one know that it is God - because they are no longer at peace where they are at? Or another church comes a lookin'. - or something else?

    I would enjoy hearing comments. Thanks!
     
  14. Pastor_Bob

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    There is a good article in the Fall 2004 edition of Today's Christian Preacher entitled "When Is It Time To Leave?" If you do not have access to this publication, I would be glad to post it here for you; it is only two pages long.
     
  15. Circuitrider

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    Bobbyd,

    Dr. Cedarholm taught us that it takes at least 5 years to get to know which faces go with which problems and for the people to even trust you to make changes. Take Paul's advice in II Tim 4..."preach the Word" and love them, and let the problems take care of themselves. When you have been there a little longer, you will have the direction to know what to do. [​IMG]
     
  16. chipsgirl

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    A similar situation occured at my church when the current pastor came in. He wanted to and did make changes for the better. The older people who disagreed left. Now our church is growing and reaching out to the community and beyond beacuse of changes made. Guess it's true what they say about old people getting set in their ways. I just wish they would have given the pastor a chance so they could see what all is going on now. They could have been great mentors to some of us younger Christians.
     
  17. Jensen

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    Pastor Bob, Please post or email me a copy. Thanks.
     
  18. Plain Old Bill

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    A lot of good advice here. I think TaterTot has the key to your quest though. My wife does this to me all the time. She plants a little seed and about three months later I come up with this great idea for which I get a great deal of praise from her.She's always been smarter than me.

    Hint don't over plant it will be to obvious.
     
  19. Pastor_Bob

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    It is posted in a new thread entitled, "When Is It Time To Leave?"
     
  20. dclark14

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    I am going into my 15th year at FBC and I'm finding that some of the changes that I would have made-if I could have- early on are just now coming to pass. I found out that -as much as I might have disagreed with some of the folks who opposed a certain change- God was using them to 1:bring about growth in my people-relationships, and 2:to show me that it just wasn't His timing. I remember a story about a new pastor who immediately moved the piano from the right of the pulpit to the left, only to meet with a disaster on Sunday next. He was told in no uncertain terms to move it back where it "belonged". He finally succeeded, however, in moving the piano with no opposition. How? He moved it one inch each week!
    Blessings, brothers.
     

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