Jump directly to the Content

Leading in Thought, Word, and Deed

Why not all leaders are visionaries, and that's OK.

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 ...

January/February
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
My Patient Revolution
My Patient Revolution
Creating a place where everyone belongs.
From the Magazine
In Christian Publishing, ‘Platform’ Is Being Weighed and Found Wanting
In Christian Publishing, ‘Platform’ Is Being Weighed and Found Wanting
Favoring big-name authors and “influencers” might be good for the bottom line, but not always for the books—and readers—themselves.
Editor's Pick
Come Ye Pastors, Heavy Laden
Come Ye Pastors, Heavy Laden
Learning to walk under the weight of ministry's many hats.
close