Starting a church has been my emphasis for many years and as a result I have had the privilege to help several young men get churches started. Though having a successful start is important, the days and years that come after the start are equally important. Because there are many challenges to build a church and make it strong many young men would be helped from a thorough review of their ministry by an older man of God.
Bible College training is helpful and necessary; however, it is only a preliminary education. There will be many issues arise that fit into the category, “I didn’t learn this in college.” Pastoral training is a lifelong experience and no man of God will reach a point where he no longer needs to improve his pastoral ability. The two primary ways to develop as a pastor are from experience and godly counsel. Experience is a wonderful teacher but wise counsel can spare a preacher untold problems. Learning from men of God that have been in the battle can be a great resource of strength and knowledge.
Some young men enter the pastorate without even being aware of many of the responsibilities they will encounter. Several traveling preachers are informing me that many young men need help with the basic aspects of ministry. Often young preachers don’t even know what questions to ask and many times they are not even aware of their need for more help. “Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety.” — Proverbs 11:14. Building a strong church requires the intervention and blessing of God along with a willingness to be taught and grow in the Lord. If seasoned men can be linked to young preachers it would prove to be extremely profitable.
Some of the skills necessary for pastoring include preaching, soul-winning and teaching. However there are many more responsibilities of the pastor. An honest review, like a physical checkup, could prove to be a great help to every church. Seeking help from successful men who can honestly review your ministry will strengthen your church.
I have begun to develop a template detailing the duties of the pastor and the church that will review every aspect of its ministry. My hope is to have it completed by the end of the summer and begin to utilize it by this Fall. Some of the areas that it will include are: church finances, outreach, leader’s job descriptions and guidelines, the church constitution, church culture, buildings and grounds, advertising, the pastor and his family, hospitality, music, pastoral enhancement, vision, friendliness, discipleship, developing leaders, prayer, ministries, motivation, internet technology, zoning and building laws, insurance and several more issues of great importance.
Why haven’t we been doing this? Perhaps it hasn’t happened because of embarrassment, pride or disorganization. But in most cases I believe young men don’t realize there are older men willing to help them and I believe there are older men that don’t realize young men would be open to such help. If we can get the older men connected with the younger men our churches will be stronger. And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also. — 2 Timothy 2:2. Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend. — Proverbs 27:17.