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Would You Attend Your Church if You Weren’t the Pastor?

As a young pastor, I wanted people to like our church. I wanted people to love our church.

During the days of slow growth and uncertainty, I wasn’t sure of what we were doing or who we were reaching. I just wanted to figure something out that worked.

I didn’t realize it then, but I wasn’t sure who I was or who I wanted to be.

I think I just wanted to be “successful” in our ministry. So if I thought one kind of music was effective, I would try that; if one type of small group system was working, I went that direction, or if one kind of teaching was popular, I did that.

I tried to make everyone happy. The result was an unclear vision. 

“The services need more of God’s presence; we need to worship longer,” one person said.

“More worship? We can do more worship,” I thought.

“The service was kind of long today,” another attendee remarked.

“We can do shorter services. A shorter sermon? I can do that!”

“You want to hear more teaching on faith? Sure thing. I’m pretty sure I can make that happen.”

My secret thought was, “If I change what we are doing, will you stay? Will you help?”

I remember a season in our church when I said to Holly, “If I wasn’t the pastor of this church, I don’t think I would go here.”

That statement speaks volumes.