The Difference Between a Pastor’s Support and a Pastor’s Personal Involvement
NOTE: This is adapted from my book, Pastoring Men (Moody Publishers, 2009).
I cannot overstate this: No one has more influence with your men than you do.
Once I was invited to speak to a special men’s class at a local church during the Sunday School hour. My speaking was well publicized–both the Senior Pastor and the Executive Pastor announced it. About thirty-five men attended and we had a wonderful time.
Simultaneously, the Senior Pastor was teaching a three-week series for men on Sunday evenings. He had five hundred men attend his men’s classes–and one of the classes was during the NFC playoff game! It was a priority to this Pastor, and the men sensed it.
Then a new Senior Pastor came on board. He shared John’s vision for small groups. He convinced the leadership that the congregation should stop coming to the church building on Wednesday nights. Instead, he wanted to break people into small groups that would meet in homes. In the spring he announced that they would start the new small-group ministry in the fall. Over the summer he preached on the importance and value of small groups.
On the first night, 817 people met in small groups.
It took seven years for a talented, committed layman (he’s in top management with a Fortune 500 company) to recruit 120 people into small groups–even with his Pastor’s full support. With the Pastor’s personal involvement, it took only seven months to recruit 817 people into small groups–an increase of nearly 700 percent.
There’s no getting around it–the Senior Pastor is the key to everything. Everything points to this overarching conclusion: For a critical mass of men to become disciples in a church, Pastors will need to take the lead.
Moody has graciously allowed us to offer both Pastors and interested laymen two of the most important chapters of Pastoring Men, Chapter 1, “Is Pastoring Men Worth the Effort?” and Chapter 5, “What Do Men Need?”–a 50 page pdf at no charge at www.pastoringmen.com.
Yours for changed lives,
Patrick Morley, Ph.D.