100 Things Learned the Hard Way

August 25, 2006

Jim Jackson has written 100 Things I’ve Learned the Hard Way as a Senior Pastor That I’ve Never Read in a Book. Pastors who read this list will nod in agreement. Church members will understand their pastor better. The following items caught my attention
4. Choose your battles carefully; ask yourself, “Is this issue central to my vision?”
14. Communicate to your staff that it is okay to fail, but it is not all right to punch holes in the boat below the water line.
23. The style of preaching that communicates today is Biblical, relevant, and confessional; it is best delivered without notes.
41. The most essential spiritual gift that a senior pastor can have is discerning of spirits.
46. Have someone needlepoint this quote for you and put it in a prominent place in your office so you can look at it often: “There is a God–You’re not God.”
54. If you’ve got to bite the head off a frog, don’t spend a lot of time looking at it; if you’ve got to bite the head off two frogs, bite the biggest one first.
58. When people think you are wonderful, subtract; when people are critical of you, add; when people praise God for blessings, multiply; when people leave the church because of you, divide.
60. Never read anonymous letters. Dear friend I saw that someone is writing tacky letters and signing your name to them.
65. The “balanced life” is as much of a logical impossibility for a passionate pastor as it was for Jesus; think instead of the Holy Spirit as a swinging pendulum in your heart which is always pointing to an area that needs special attention; respond obediently to the Spirit’s promptings.
71. Never attend wedding rehearsals, rehearsal dinners, or wedding receptions; stay home with your family.
73. In long-range planning, hardly anyone can see beyond three years.
77. You are not the last Senior Pastor your church is going to have; you are just the temporary steward of the church to which Christ has assigned you.
89. No Senior Pastor has time to be a counselor; find a therapist you trust and refer people.
94. When you walk into a room and someone says, “Hey, preacher,” it is not a greeting; it is a warning.

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