Don’t Ruin your life

Dear Young Pastor,

I always feel so bad for those men and woman that do something as young adults, that end up putting them in Prison until they are old. It may be tax fraud, embezzlement, theft, or even murder. Recently this was shown to be even more true in the lives of young teachers who chose to have sexual relationships with teenagers. If it is molestation of a child, I really do not have any sympathy; but when a young person chooses to have an illicit relationship with a post-puberty teen and then gets sent to prison for an extended period of time, I can help be feel bad for the perpetrator.

Not that I think they should not have to deal with the consequences of their actions, but to think most in this type of situation feel as if the teen is of age. Though they know better, since the child has gone through puberty many offenders feel like the child was able to give consent. It is not actually pedophilia by definition. However, it is treated much the same way as a if the child prepubescent. Please do not allow yourself to think that no one will find out. Some one will always know, even if that is just you.

Please do not ruin your life. Do not get into something that will end up ruining your life. It will also ruin your family, and your ministry. Please be aware of the enemies attacks, and watch yourself, because the world is also watching.

Reacting to conflict: 2

Dear young pastor,
You will be known by your words and actions. People want to follow someone who acts appropriately. They want a leader who is real. Most people understand that mistakes happen, but they want to see how you will react after making the mistake.
Sadly, many pastors try to brush it under the rug and run away from problems. Instead of being humble, accepting the responsibility, and making it right, they choose to remain arrogant, pass the buck, and ignore the people. It is your action the proves what type of minister you are. You have to make the choice.

Reacting to conflict: 1

Dear young pastor,
Wouldn’t it be great to never have to deal with conflict? Wouldn’t it be awesome if you could glide through life with out ever having to face opposition? But you know as well as I that opposition is everywhere. There is only one way out of opposition and that is death.
Over reacting out of emotion is one of the most common and most damaging reactions to oppositions. Natural response says, “Send an immediate email, blast them on social media, let everyone know what they have done.” Nevertheless, you know as well as I that is the worst thing you can do.
Find a way to release those emotions. Sit down in front of the word processor and type a letter letting out all of your emotion. Flush it from your system and get it out. Now close the program without saving. Get rid of it and calm down. Only when you are thinking rationally can you act appropriately. Your response will either gain you respect or ridicule. You choose.

Breathing in and Breathing out

Dear young pastor,
It has been quite a while since I wrote you. I expect many things have changed. You have a few more months experience. You have had some ups and you have had some downs. I hope you have learned from it all.
You have the chance to choose how things are going to be. You can not control anyone else but you can control yourself. You have the choice to choose who you will be in the face of the problems that you deal with. Will you handle it with diligence and honor or will you handle it with bitterness and regret? The choice is up to you.
Most importantly, remember in every trying time, breath in and breath out. Take a moment and count to 5 or 10 or 150. Calm down before reacting. It will make all the difference in the world.

Discipleship 101: 7

Dear young pastor,

You need to begin developing your core member. Building a relationship with your members is imperative. While your church is small you will be the only shepherd. As the church grows you will need to build up other shepherds who can lead others in the church.

If you maintain a small church mindset you will never become a big church. You will only grow as large as you let yourself grow. You need to put around you core leaders that you can trust. People that will be your armor bearers, who will continue to support the mission of the church. Also look for people who have different talents and capabilities.

Take these individuals to mentor and work closely with. Give them spiritual gift inventories. There are many on-line, in books, and available through different denominations. These inventories will help see areas of strength and weaknesses.

Even if you have a core group, help to train and mentor more people into your core group.

You need people to help support you and follow the mission of the church.

Discipleship 101: 6

Dear young pastor,

So you have a place for new believers. Now it is time to have a class devoted to helping believers move into church membership.

In the precious letter, I stated that some churches incorporate membership classes in the new believers class. That is understandable, however, I separate the two out.

The new believers class if more doctrinal, while the members class focuses on getting people involved in their local church. I focus on church attendance, tithes and offering, service, etc. Promote getting connected to the church.

This is the most important class for beginners.

Discipleship 101: 5

Dear young pastor,

Now that you understand your Church mission, it is time to start working on your classes. Most churches have children’s and youth classes in place. So for right now we are not going to focus on children or youth.
Instead begin with classes for new believers. As people get saved it is important to get them involved in spiritual growth. Many churches will offer new believers class. Other churches begin the process with a new members class.
In either case, the initial class begins with basic concepts of christian doctrines. Namely, you should start with doctrines of sin, salvation, the bible, and basic church ordinances or sacraments (depending on your denomination). Ordinances include baptism, tithing, communion, church membership, etc.
Do not start out with deep spiritual truths. For sure do not begin with doctrines that are complicated or contradictory. Also do not start out with things that will cause confusion. Those things can be dealt with later, but not starting out.
Begin slow and easy.