Last week I challenged senior pastors with a bold statement. I said, “If you want authentic community to flourish in your church, it begins with you. It must begin with you.” See my post, Note to Senior Pastors: Authentic Community Begins with You.
Although I included a simple example of how it could begin with the senior pastor, I had a great question from a very respected source. He asked:
“How do you help pastors overcome the fear of authenticity and desire for self protection/preservation?”
An important and complex question. At its core, I believe the answer is this simple: The road to overcoming the fear of authenticity and desire for self protection/preservation is taken one courageous step at a time. I don’t believe there is any substitute.
I do believe there are 3 prerequisite convictions for senior pastors who want authentic community.
3 Preliminary Convictions
- A preliminary step is the senior pastor’s conviction that life-change really does happen best in the midst of life-on-life relationship. As long as there is there is the remnant of hope that life-change is likely to happen in rows there will be resistance. See also, Life-Change at the Member Level.
- Another foundational conviction is that whatever you want to happen at the member level, will have to happen to the leader first. Isn’t it logical to conclude that it would be folly to assume that there would be much happening at the member level that hadn’t already been experienced by the senior pastor?
- Finally, shouldn’t it be every senior pastor’s ambition to be able to say, “Follow me as I follow Christ”? Shouldn’t their conviction be that they must lead to authentic community? See also, 8 Habits of a Life-Changing Small Group Leader and 10 Commandments of Small Group Ministry.
Easy? No. Consequence free? Not hardly. Essential? Absolutely.
What do you think? Have a question? Want to argue? You can click here to jump into the conversation.