What makes a good pastor? In seminary I was told a good pastor knows Greek and Hebrew. Church elders told me a good pastor keeps the budget in the black and people in the pews. In part two of his post, Jim Martin, pastor of Crestview Church of Christ in Waco, Texas, continues his thoughts on good pastors (a.k.a. "Jesus Leaders").
We are at our best when we help move men and women toward the kingdom of heaven. Contrast this with Jesus' observation that some teachers of his day seemed to get in the way of people moving ahead toward kingdom living. In far too many churches there is a disconnect between the men and women in the pews and those who are leading the church. How tragic when the church appears to be ahead of the leaders. How tragic when those who lead no longer have a genuine pastoral heart for people. Not so with Jesus leaders. They shepherd people like Jesus.
We are at our best when men and women in the community can really be better off because of our ministry. How sad when human beings are worse off for having come in contact with a church leader. People get short changed and hurt when they are used and manipulated by ministers. Far too often, ministers' actions are fueled by personal insecurities instead of the Gospel. Meanwhile, Jesus leaders bring the security, joy, and peace of the Gospel.
We are at our best when the people in our church can trust our integrity. Jesus speaks of the importance of integrity in regard to what one says. Integrity means that we speak truth both publicly and privately. You can count on what we are saying. We quote people accurately. We do not present someone else's material as our own. We do not promise to repay a debt and then "forget" about it. Integrity is not about what we said ...