A Pastor’s Relationship to his Children

“You always put the church ahead of us!” Those were the angry words hurled at our friend by his adult daughter. The young woman had become estranged from both her pastor father and her faith a few years before, and despite repeated attempts by both parents to heal the break, she remains alienated. This pastor …

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A Pastor’s Relationship with Self

You are on a plane taxiing for takeoff; the flight attendant takes the microphone and makes the familiar announcement: “In the unlikely event the plane suddenly loses cabin pressure, oxygen masks will automatically deploy from the panel overhead.” She then demonstrates how to place the mask over the face. She concludes by emphasizing that adults …

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A Pastor’s Relationship with God: How Is Your Soul?

The conversation would always begin with the same question; “How is your soul?” After we exchanged greetings and placed our order, Bob would zero in with that simple question, “How is your soul?” With gentleness and genuine concern, he pinned me to the wall. Even though I knew the question was coming, there was no …

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A Pastor’s Relationship with the Church

We typically describe a pastor’s relationship to his people in leadership terms, such as shepherd or overseer, and rightly so, but leadership authority Ronald A. Heifetz offers us a new description. He claims that leading institutional change is a process of “disappointing people at a rate they can absorb.” This is a profound observation. In …

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To Plant or To Replant, That Is the Question

Okay, I admit I am envious. I’m envious of the new house my friend recently built. I’m especially envious of the energy-efficient spray foam insulation, modern windows and doors, and fuel-miser heating system. As I lug firewood and watch my woodpile shrink through the long Maine winter, I often wish I could start over, building …

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Preaching Through the Church Year – Jack Daniel

One Sunday during last year’s Christmas season, my wife and I worshipped at the church of a young, dynamic pastor whom I had been coaching. His message was biblical, practical, and well delivered, and the worship music was uplifting and skillfully led. Only one thing was missing: Christmas! No mention was made of Christmas anywhere …

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