It's easy for pastors to be irrational about our role. I've often joked with fellow ministers about the seemingly thankless role of the senior pastor. If the church grows, God gets all the credit. If the church fails, it's your fault. Revival? Attributed to God's sovereign grace. Lethargy and rebellion? Poor leadership. Whether stated or implied, this twisted logic undergirds much of how we assess our ministry and effectiveness.

"If people aren't healthy," we think, "It's my fault."

There are many leadership principles rooted in blaming "rebellion" or other internal conflict upon the leadership. One business aphorism (often parroted from conference platforms) is the principle that "church growth is limited by leadership growth." The logic goes something like this: The reason your church isn't growing is that you are not ready for growth. Until you develop more capacity as a leader, you will not be able to handle ...

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