The weather is changing in Carbondale. Storms are on the horizon and the temperature is supposed to fall. Yesterday I saw the most magnificent duck family and was able to take a few photos. The weather is in a state of unrest…much as our country… The decision is before child care facilities and churches and businesses…to open or not to open. MJ got her first haircut, in a few months, today…and she is quite happy about it! I heard on the radio that 23 states are experiencing spikes in Covid-19 cases. Just because a church is no longer under governmental restrictions for reopening…does that mean that it is essential that they reopen immediately?
I have ruminated on the subject of what does it take for a minister of a christian church to be a good pastor? This would be due to the fact that in my 51 years as a christian…I have experienced all kinds. I come from the old holiness people who believed that to be a minister or a pastor…you had to have a calling. Now, that does not mean that a pastor should be an itinerate preacher…although I have been blessed by the ministry’s of some of these expositors. In fact the Presbyterian Church USA is an organization that produces detailed and lengthy and theological degree holding, pastors. Also, the first consideration that a congregant should hold dear to their heart is that their pastor is as human as they are. I do not want to disillusion you…but there is no magic dust or pixy dust that is sprinkled on the head of your pastor!
However, there are certain gifts that all sincere members of a congregation should look for in a prospective pastor…or in their current pastor:
- Does your pastor exhibit strong and empathetic care for all members of your congregation?
- Are you intrigued by their humility and that they do not take themselves to seriously?
- Does your pastor have the facility and methodology to bring all of the members of your congregation together?
- Does your pastor connect with all members of your congregation…and is she/he able to telegraph to all members of the congregation their individual importance to the mission of your church?
- Do you feel like your pastor is a breath of fresh air and a gift to your church family?
- Is your pastor friendly, but not familiar?
- Is your pastor good, but not gullible?
- When you or a member of your family are experiencing a crisis…do you seek your minister’s pastoral counsel…or would you rather not?
- When you hear a funny story or a cute anecdote…do you think of your pastor to share the narrative with?
- When you are in a meeting with your pastor…do you feel comfortable and at peace…or are you anxious?
- Do you enjoy having a cup of coffee with your pastor…or a glass of wine?
Churches succeed by the combined efforts of all of the members of the group…but those united labors are facilitated by a skilled and gifted leader… Churches seek pastoral leadership and often have difficulty discovering a candidate that is a good fit for their mission and ministry. When you discover the leader who is tuned into your fellowship and has the vision to take your church forward….you have found the pastor who is called…to journey with you…back to Jerusalem…