The All-Purpose Pastor

During my senior year in college, I met several times with one of the legends in my denomination. This larger-than-life character pastored a large church, was a noted author, and had an extensive radio ministry. I consciously made him my role model and studied his work habits. I wanted to be as productive as he was.

Once I asked him how he became effective in so many areas of ministry. He told me it came with age and experience.

"The longer you serve, the broader your ministry becomes," he said. "You can't afford to be a specialist when you serve in the emergency room of the soul."

I determined then I was going to excel in everything, just as he did.

Ten years later, I found I had not excelled at everything. I had too much to do and too little time to do it.

Another older pastor who became a mentor offered some advice. If I continued at the pace I was working, he told me, I would soon burn out. He said I should choose whether I wanted to be a pastor or a preacher, and I should make that decision ...

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