How To Lead Your Pastor

Chris Wesley —  January 31, 2013 — 13 Comments

I used to have heated arguments with my pastor.  They were exhausting and painful.  I remember walking into the church office after a moment of confrontation filled with resentment thinking, “If I ran this church it would be better because I would…”  All that mindset did was drain me.  Many times the reason pastors and youth pastors clash is because of a disagreement on decisions, strategies or leadership.

While you may never want to be a pastor you might have some thought and ideas on how it should be done.  Before you get ready to go off and plant your own church, consider that maybe you need to do a better job of leading up.  If you ever want your pastor to listen to your ideas and you want to LEAD UP you need to make sure you:

  • Offer Encouragement: Your pastor takes on much of the criticism and burden that leading a church will bring.  It’ll be easy for him to feel defeated and hopeless, you need to be a cheerleader.  Not only will this give him confidence; but, it will help him see that you are loyal to his leadership.  Loyalty is often rewarded.
  • Practice Obedience:  As the leader your pastor needs to make decisions.  Some you’ll agree with and others not so much.  If you disobey your pastor and constantly undermine his decisions you are showing a lack of trust and signs of arrogance. Showing obedience to your pastor is also a sign of trust in God.  After all your pastor is in the position he is in because of God.  While he might not always have it right, your obedience will help you build clout so that you can guide him in the right direction.
  • Praise Publicly Confront Privately: Never criticize your pastor publicly.  When you speak about your pastor in the open you shape people’s perspectives.  You will not only hurt his image, but the churches and even yours.  If you have a problem with a decision he’s made or something he’s done confront him privately.  Set up a meeting where you can chat one on one, so that he’s not embarrassed in front of others.
  • Continually Communicate: If you ever want to influence up you need to consistently communicate with your pastor.  That means being honest with your struggles and letting him know your needs.  It also requires that you ask your pastor, “How can I serve you?”  What you are really saying to him is, “How can I help you out?”  This builds a healthy relationship so that when you are in trouble or in need you have an ally.

The relationship you have with your pastor is going to depend on your personalities.  Even if you are coming from completely different ends of the earth, you can influence him by earning his respect, trust and loyalty.  You won’t get your way in ministry if you are knocking him down, disobeying his decisions and making him out to be a bad guy.  Lead up by showing him you are worth following.

How do you strengthen the relationship you have with your pastor?

Its been a while since we have compiled a list of the songs that our worship teams are playing these days so here they are. It would be great to hear some songs that are really resonating with your students as well. So add a comment with your current top ten.

          Josh at HSM – Saddleback

  • We Are The Free – Matt Redman
  • All I am – Phil Wickam
  • Learn To Love – Cluster of Students
  • Child of God – Tim Timmons
  • Saviour of the World – Ben Cantelon
  • Forever Reign – Hillsong United
  • Divine and Holy – Cluster of Students
  • One Thing Remains – Jesus Culture
  • God Above All -  Hillsong United
  • We Can Change The World – Matt Redman

 

        Geoff at Journey – Peace Portal Church

  • Unending Love – Hillsong United
  • Saviour of the World – Ben Cantelon
  • All Glory – Nikki Fletcher
  • We Are The Free – Matt Redman
  • Reign In Us – Starfield
  • You’ll Come – Hillsong United
  • How He Loves Us – Jesus Culture
  • God is Able – Hillsong United
  • Dancing Generation – Matt Redman
  • Tear Down The Walls – Hillsong
GS – Twitter

 



One of the responsibilities of each of us is to protect the unity of the church. At times, youth workers are put in difficult positions where we have the opportunity to listen to gossip, agree with critical spirit and add to the problems that are brewing beneath the surface of any church. Be a part of the solution, here’s what I think are some trench-tested ways to make sure

Fight gossip with praise
If you hear criticism directed at a specific person, immediately turn it around with praise. When someone identifies a weakness, speak directly to one of their strengths.

Point them back to the person it is about
Without hearing too much, you can usually see that a person’s venom is directed toward someone specific. Gently nudge or firmly direct them to the person they should be talking to, not you.

Remove the repeat offender
You will be talked about. A gossip TO you will gossip ABOUT you. People that undermine others will undermine you and unravel what you are trying to build. This is always a last-resort-tough-call-no-one-likes-to-do-it but doing it once will send a huge statement on where you stand and how seriously you take this issue.

How about you – what are some other ways to help protect the unity of the church?

JG