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To win support for ministry requires the right attitude

A friend read me a letter his pastor had written to his church. The pastor chastised the congregation for their lack of commitment, poor attendance at services, and a general lack of support for programs.

While my friend read, my mind drifted to the lists I used to keep and the letters I used to write.

The lists would mark the attendance of the elders and deacons at church services. During the service I would make mental note of who was there and then afterward make my way to my office to record the data. I was gathering evidence to build a case, evidence to prove their lack of commitment to the church, evidence to justify my anger.

In an all-encompassing letter, I once criticized the entire board because of their lack of support for a church missions conference. I pointed out that less than 40 percent of the board even attended the meetings-less than the percentage of our regular people who attended!

"How can we possibly expect others to get excited about missions," I wrote angrily, "when ...

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From Issue:Winter 1993: Conflict
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