03 Sep Your Personal Pace, Part 5
We all have job descriptions. Pastors do too. We also all have expectations. Some of those are contained in our job descriptions, but I venture to say that MOST of the things we are expected to do are NOT in the job description.
I don’t know where it comes from, but I was told by a counselor who counsels Pastors that studies have shown that the average American congregation has 72 different role expectations of their Pastor! WOW! I’m getting tired just thinking about it!
That leaves a ton of stuff to figure out about what we ought to do and we ought not do. Truth is in leadership positions of any kind, it becomes imperative to figure out WHAT KIND of leader you are. You cannot do it all. Contrary to popular belief (maybe even YOUR belief), you are NOT Superman.
Thriving long-term in ministry leadership requires that you check your cape at the door and leave the “S” shirt (and blouses, ladies) in the closet at home.
That said, I grow a little concerned any time I hear someone say, “Pastors should (fill in the blank)….” or “Pastors need to (fill in the blank)….”, as though every Pastor is built in a way that would make him or her an expert in the area the person is talking about.
An example would be an article I read recently where a highly respected church leader said, “I think the role of pastors at this time in history is to be a curator of human talent. They need to learn how to cultivate, how to identify, how to nurture, how to develop and unleash the God-given potential in every person.”
At it’s core, I agree with this leader’s assessment. Part of our job description biblically is to help people develop and mature into all that God has for them. Even still, that is only partly up to us.
My concern is that while every Pastor is called to shepherd people to places of greater growth and maturity, not every Pastor is good at cultivating AND identifying AND nurturing AND developing AND unleashing.
Some are good at identifying, but not very good at nurturing. Some are good at cultivating, but not very good at unleashing. Add to the mix that we ALL do well to commit to a posture of life-long learning. Even still, we cannot be good at everything that is expected of us. We are humans, and built into us are limitations.
Friends, co-workers, part of finding your personal pace is to accept the fact that you are just a human, and therefore limited. Demands all around us and the expectations, whether imposed by others or self-imposed, tempt us to be and do and perform and live up to some things that even Jesus doesn’t expect of us.
First and foremost, we must be followers of His, whatever that may mean. You see, while we all love the same Savior, He has created each of us very differently from one another. You will find no ministry or vocation that has two of the exact same people in them, because we’re all as unique as our fingerprints. Better said, we are all unique because of His fingerprints upon us.
In finding your personal pace, release yourself from the comparisons, the “should’s” and the “ought-to’s”. Find who Jesus is making YOU to be in the context of the role and mantle He has given you, and receive that as part of your personal pace.
What is one thing you are doing right now in your role ONLY because it is expected and NOT because it is part of who God made you to be?