For the past 20 years, we've heard "Pastors must be leaders." Denominations and conferences reward the strong, the bold, the visionary.
That has caused frustration, often unspoken, among many pastors I know. God called them to shepherd his people, yet they don't feel like visionary leaders.
"I'm not that good at setting vision," one pastor confided. "I feel weak as a leader." I shook my head in bewilderment; his congregation has thrived and grown under his care.
The current assumption is that pastoral leadership means being a strong organizational leader. But many pastors play a different role, just as powerful: thought leader.
We know about the organizational leader: setter of vision, builder of systems, raiser of money, achiever of goals. But a pastor can be a thought leader: sower of ideas, embodier of virtues, persuader of truth.
An organizational leader concentrates on budgets, vision, and systems. A thought leader concentrates on lifestyle, communication, and ideas—where they came ...1