I can't tell pastors today how difficult it was when I was a pastor. To the contrary, I have to be honest and tell them it is more difficult now.
I asked church leaders and churchgoers to share some really good excuses they've heard from people who choose not to attend church. I got some fascinating responses.
"I need you to do a funeral for my cat." Yes, that is a request made to a pastor by a church member. And here's the stranger reality. I have heard from dozens of pastors who have had this very request.
There are many things pastors would like to say, but they don't feel like they have the freedom to do so. I compiled ten of the more common unspoken comments pastors wish they could express.
"There is so much negativity in our church. What can we do?" What can a pastor or church leader do to help move the congregation more positively?
If you serve as a pastor or church staff member, there is rarely a boring moment. A few years ago, I began polling pastors and church staff and collecting some really weird things church members said to them.
The interim period between two pastors can be a time of great benefit for churches. It is for that reason I encourage churches not to make mistakes common during this interim time.
I have been following these long-tenured pastors for years. And I have seen consistently seven patterns, or habits, in their lives.
They won't ever go away. So you can either leave ministry because of them, or you can deal with them. Here are seven ways you can deal with gnats.
The church built too big. And now comes the aftermath. I also call it "unintended consequences." Here are eight of them:
Time is of the essence. If changes do not happen soon, very soon, these churches will die. The pace of congregational death is accelerating.
The guests showed up, but they never returned. Has that ever happened in your church? You try to be friendly to first-time guests. But you never see them again. At times you wonder why they never returned.
The email stung me. The writer spoke of my negativity about local churches, about how much of my writings are about problems in local congregations.
The young pastor, at least by my perspective, impressed me. Though only 34 years old, he had a maturity and wisdom about him that went beyond his chronological age.
Every year another two million American adults become less receptive to the gospel, and less receptive to churches.
I love hearing from pastors and other church staff about their honeymoons and the reasons they ended. Here are the top seven reasons I compiled from those conversations.
So what are pastors posting on social media that is raising the ire of church members? It typically falls into one or more of these five categories:
There are a lot of us Baby Boomer pastors and Christian leaders around. And it's cliché, but we aren't getting any younger. It's a quiet question that many are asking, but they are asking it nonetheless: What age should I retire?
In 1974 Burger King made a bold move to take market share from McDonald's. At the time, McDonald's made burgers en masse. If you wanted a special order, you had to wait interminably while it was cooked separately.
Preacher eater churches? I had never heard the term until I became a pastor.
Here are the most frequent comments we heard from church staff. These are ten ways pastors can be great bosses.
In the course of three decades, I have seen some pastors thrive and some pastors fail. And I have seen two common reasons for pastors failing.
How did these few churches go from near death to vibrant life? Here are their stories.
Compromising. We don't like that word. But compromising is indeed a necessary trait for leaders, even leaders in the local church. Allow me then to offer five basic principles of compromising for those who serve the local church.
Allow me to share some of the best responses I have heard from churches that have gone through this tragic time.