Enabling Ministers

Ben Arment, a pastor/church planter in NOVA, (who also was my college pastor for a couple of years, in other words, I’m proud to say I know him), posted here on how he maintains a 90% volunteer involvement rate at his church.

He has developed some specific strategies that I think we can benefit to hear. Many pastors I have met complain about the involvement of lay persons at their church. Many of the professors I have sat under seem to think the problem is that the people are reprobate, lost, or unconcerned for the lost/ministry/etc.

What if the problem was the pastor? What if his vision was too small? What if he spent too much of his time in his study or on his pedastal and too little time enabling his church?

How can we enable each other to minister? How can we break down the pseudo-hierarchy we have in our churches called the clergy-vs-laity dichotomy?

Perhaps you are saying that churches expect the pastors to do the work. I don’t totally disagree. But I think many people feel incapable to do the work of a trained professional because we have made ministry to be something only to be done by trained professionals. Ben Arment, and others, find that when we enable others to minister, they will, and they will do so well.

What our your thoughts?

How can pastors better enable the people? (You don’t have to be a pastor to answer this question; in fact, lay perspectives may be the most helpful here!)

How can missionaries better enable national believers?

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2 Comments

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  1. Know your congregation. I think that is a simple statement, but a true one. I feel too many times Pastours simply preach on a Sunday morning, and allow the rest of staff or deacons to do the work of a shepard. If one is to be responsible of a flock then the shepard must be with his sheep. Getting to know a congregation allows for vision in to lives, getting to know what is going on in the lives of the members of the church being pastoured. One who is just behind the pulpit come sunday morning cannot understand his congregation, nor can the congregation understand him if there isn’t some form of personal communication, other than shaking hands as people leave the door to go eat lunch on a sunday afternoon.

  2. Allen, thanks for the comments. Many pastors lead their churches like a CEO of a corporation or as a unchallengeable monarch. I think you are right to point out that many pastors need to learn to shepherd.

    A dear brother in the Lord, Alan Knox at The Assembling of the Church is another pastor I know who is truly trying to be a caring shepherd. Check out his blog and be blessed.

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