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How to Transform Ministry Disappointment into Hope

What you are doing matters, even when fruit appears to be scarce.
How to Transform Ministry Disappointment into Hope

When I was in seminary, one of the professors told us aspiring pastors that we should never expect to have close friends in the churches we lead. It is always best, the professor said, to seek out friendships with people who are not part of our church families.

Having now served for 18 years in pastoral ministry, I resist the professor’s advice. I can safely say that my closest friends are from the church I serve as pastor, and they have been in previous churches as well.

Yet from a practical and experiential standpoint, I understand why the professor would advise us in this way. In every church we have served, my wife and I have experienced rejection from people who had, for a time, been our close friends. Sometimes the breakup occurred because I, as pastor, was not doing enough to give these friends the kind of church they wanted—a better youth or children’s ministry, different music, a different style of preaching, or a different vision than what I was offering to them. ...

July/August
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