Big Ambitions, Small Church

I was mad. And the more I thought about it, the madder I got.

I had attended a seminar entitled "Ministry in the Small Church." I had pastored small churches, but this was my first study of the concept. Now, heading home from the conference, I was mad—at the denomination, at the seminary, at my superintendent, even at myself.

I was mad because I wasn't at all ready to hear what I heard. I wasn't prepared to see myself as a career small-church pastor, enduring low status among colleagues, locked into a lifetime of poverty.

The financial pinch was the toughest. I'd been on food stamps for two years, the kids were being fed by wic and free lunches at school. I had cashed in my life insurance policy, and when the old Toyota died, it was replaced by a bicycle. I didn't know how much longer we could survive. This was not what I expected.

Where's my yuppie church?

Until entering the ministry, my experience was in mid- to large-size churches, full of educated, professional people. After college ...

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