WHAT DO PEOPLE NEED FROM THEIR PASTOR?

 

WHAT DO PEOPLE NEED FROM THEIR PASTOR

 

 Pastor X was going into his first church with excitement and freshly drawn plans to blast his church off the map. Well, that’s how it began and within a couple years the new church turned into work, long hours and desperate measures for the pastor to keep up. Feeling the need to focus, Pastor X asked with a sigh of exasperation, “What does my church need from me the most?” “What do I focus on?” “What do people need from a pastor?”

 

 

GIVE YOUR PERSONAL TESTIMONY

 

The Superman pastor who leaps over tall buildings, stops speeding trains and deflects bullets off his chest is dead. The pastor who explains his own struggles of falling asleep in an early morning prayer meeting, admits he is asking God to make him a better pastor, asks for payer when he is sick and is transparent will gain more traction than Superman

 

Think humble. I am not better. I am not perfect. I make mistakes. Let’s all work together to please God and let’s work as a team to get where we ALL need to be – will find people willing to circle around you. 

 

Give your personal testimony of grace, your personal testimony of forgiveness and your personal testimony of healing.  Be human.

 

 

GIVE PRIME TIME

 

This doesn’t mean to give ALL your time. Give people your ear, your eyes and your understanding. When you are there be ALL there. Don’t be checking your phone while talking to them, don’t be looking somewhere else and definitely don’t keep looking at your watch.

 

 WHEN YOU ARE THERE BE ALL THERE

 

Give each member their hug for the day, compliment their promptness, and thank them for their faithfulness appreciate them for their prayers. Make each minute count by making valuable moments when you are with them. You can’t give everyone equal time but you can give them quality time with you are with them.

 

 

 

EXEMPLIFY PRAYER

 

Prayer is as necessary to a pastor as oil to your car engine. Slow down, spend time with God, and rest in His presence. Seek God and His presence will come; if you seek an experience with God you may wait indefinitely but seek a relationship with God and He will meet you when you mention His name.

 

 FIND A PLACE, IDENTIFY HIS PRESENCE AND GIVE JESUS YOUR PRAISE

 

Make prayer a priority at church, at home and in your personal life. Encourage your church to pray at church and at home. Announce special times of prayer and give time in each service for praying for one another. 

 

 

LOVE PEOPLE

 

People can discern between a pastor who is doing his job and a pastor who loves his people. It is no mistake the Pastor is compared to a caring shepherd in the Gospels. A pastor who loves his sheep will tell them, show them and disciple them. A pastor may not be able to make every hospital call, spend unbridled time on the phone or casually talk to the guy who has nothing going on today. But he can express care, respect, and thankfulness to everyone.

 

 

What do you think people want from their pastor?

 

 

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author. This post should not be construed as medical, legal or counseling advice.

 

Three Things Pastors Are Afraid Of

A CHURCH MEMBER WILL UNLOAD ON THEM RIGHT BEFORE SERVICE

Let’s face it Pastors go to the pulpit with a lot on their mind. Announcements may not have been made. They forgot to acknowledge a special guest in the service. The pastor was to receive a special offering for a mission’s project. A song was to be sang before the message. An emphasis was to be given for the children’s ministry. A sermon series introductory video was to be played right after you read your text.

Having a stage assistant can be invaluable even in smaller churches. The microphones are filled with fresh batteries. The microphone is tested and ready for the special song. The video has been set up to play. A note sheet has been placed on the pulpit for announcements and special acknowledgements. The pastor shouldn’t be responsible but a trainee into ministry can be introduced in this position.

If the pastor didn’t have enough on his mind, a church member comes to church ready to unload their pent up emotions and vents right before service. This unbelievable outbreak can harm, influence and overshadow the service. Why not try these?  Stay in your office till ten minutes before service; shake hands with a few people, make your way back to the pulpit and begin service. Position greeters and don’t linger in the lobby before service. Tell someone kindly, “I would like to hear what you have to say; I’m sure it is important but I still have a few hands to shake before service begins.” Smile and walk away. As pastor set the tone and the time for meetings.

A CHURCH MEMBER WILL GET ANGRY OVER SOMETHING THE PASTOR HAD LITTLE OR NO CONTROL OVER

Even the most perfect pastor will have someone get angry with their judgment or with a particular action. Don’t dismay. You are not in this boat alone. Pastors admit about two people get angry with the pastor every year. If the church runs 100 or 200 people and only one or two get upset a year; I’d say you are running a good average. Let’s face it a pastor can’t make everybody happy. In fact, you will go insane trying to make everybody happy. So what is a pastor to do? Let’s look at a few suggestions. (This is a big subject and deserves a blog post dedicated to this one item).

LET’S FACE IT A PASTOR CAN’T MAKE EVERYBODY HAPPY

Firstly, make sure your communication of events, programs and ideas are given plenty of air space. The church bulletin, announcement screen, flyers, postcards or website should be informative and announced in advance.

Secondly, build a circle of protectors around you. Make a few decisions as Pastor, make most decisions as a team. This is called insurance. The board decided. The committee decided. The vision team decided. You may need to call a special church meeting but make sure everyone has the proper information before the meeting. Some meetings we discuss but don’t vote – it gives time to process the information and make a more informed decision the next meeting time.

Thirdly, treat everyone with respect. IF someone is angry don’t give a church member the luxury of dragging you into the fight, Smile and say, “Well…..” as Bethel Family Worship Center, Pastor Russell Hylton, suggests.

A CHURCH MEMBER WILL QUESTION MY INTEGRITY

Pastors want to get it right. They may suffer from depression because they can’t get it right every time but Pastors know that if they lose their integrity they lose the ministry. That’s right. In the ministry the moment integrity is gone then usually the church board will declare the Pastor incompetent and he will be terminated. Pastors know they aren’t perfect even though they try very hard to be perfect. They try to preach better, lead better and shepherd better but most guard their integrity because they know they could lose their spouse, their family, their church, their income and mostly, their intimate relationship with God. Let’s guard our heart by put security protections in place. Have a pastoral friend you can talk to. Date your wife. Read the Bible and pray daily. These are just a few safeguards that protect the heart. 

LET’S GUARD OUR HEART BY PUT SECURITY PROTECTIONS IN PLACE

In my office I have a picture of my wife’s and my wedding picture, is a picture going to save me from a closed door impurity – No, but it is one more hurdle that is in place to make it more difficult to lose my integrity. Integrity is the most valuable thing a pastor possesses and he must guard it with everything he has.

But what happens when someone misjudges a situation and questions your authority? Lies were conjured to judge Jesus – let’s look at his response.  He answered them not a word. There will be a time when you will speak in your defense but to speak in haste or angry only deepens the problem. Wait – sometimes giving the accuser enough time and he will trap himself with his own lie. Trust in God to speak up for you. God is very angry when people misjudge a man of God. Let God make the first move. Pray with your leaders. Humble yourself – arrogance will lose every battle. Stephen, when stoned in Acts 7, had the face of an angel, possible one of the most impacting moments in Paul’s later conversion. Let your leaders and congregation see Jesus in you.

Pastor, what are you mostly afraid of?

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author. This post should not be construed as medical, legal or counseling.

BECOME A PERSON OF INFLUENCE

manFirst in a series of a multi-blog post on Influence

In the world of influence there are dreamers, tinkers and winners. Dreamers are the people who wish, pray, hope and play the mental lottery hoping to get the winning ticket. Tinkers are the people who toy with the idea, experiment with numbers and sidetracked with “shiny objects.” The winners are those who want to jog, so they jog today, they buy the outfit, they read about “safe” jogging and they put “jogging” on the calendar. A winner does what they are dreaming and what they are tinkering with.

 

THE SECRET TO SUCCESS IS STILL HARD WORK AND THAT’S NOT A SECRET

 

EMPOWER YOUR STRENGTHS

List your strengths and weaknesses. What happens next happens every time we mention winners. We judge ourselves with too many weaknesses to become a winner. But let’s be honest—we all know our weaknesses, but we all know our strengths. Instead of concentrating on our weaknesses and gauging how we will fix, eliminate or diminish our weaknesses, let’s concentrate on our individual strengths God has given us and let’s empower it.

Empower your strength by finding avenues to exercise it. Buying into your strengths will yield a better harvest then trying to pull out every weed that grows in the field. Funding weaknesses and discovering a strength in the mix leads to trouble as placing the wrong man in the wrong place at the wrong time.

If your strength is the gift of communication begin to research how to better communicate to your circle of friends, family and business associates by planting visual pictures of your strengths at work.

Send a card for their birthday

Text a “happy” note each day

Use Twitter as an encouragement tool

Contact someone you haven’t heard from in a while

Discern the needs of others and lift their spirit

 

When your strength is communication and you invest in people’s lives the weakness will become weaker and the strength will become stronger. Just as muscles grow stronger through exercise so personality strengths become stronger through use.

 

DON’T WASTE A LIFE—INVEST IT

 

EVALUATE THE PAST

Answer these questions cover a period of time – maybe a week. Your greatest influence may well be found in this process of self-evaluation.

Where did I find the most satisfaction?

Where did I influence people?

Where is my heart headed?

 

When do I get the most done?

When do I influence others the most? (Time of year and event)

When do I know I did my best?

Who are my friends who tell me the truth?

Who is my mentor?

Who most influences me?

 

What is my life’s major dream?

What do I love the most?

What am I doing daily to reach my dreams?

 

Why?–most important question of all.

Why do I do what I do?

Why am I not influencing others?

Why don’t I start today?

 

When we carefully and prayerfully examine and evaluate our life we might get discouraged but would you be willing to change if you knew you could actually close next year being encouraged because your field of influence grew?

Pray this prayer with me, Lord, increase my territory, enlarge my boundaries, fill me with more of you, through my humility and strength in you I can do all things. AMEN.

 

Coming next: Become a Person of Influence- Little or Much?

 

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author. This post should not be construed as medical, legal or counselling.

When to Say NO

noThere is probably not a harder word to say with conviction than the word, “No!” For the motivated and vision driven leaders we have a tendency to lean on “more is better.” Busy is the key word in business – so we work harder, schedule tighter, press on more and push until exhausted. When we do say, “No,” it is usually with a bowed head and droopy eyes; as if we had just been informed someone had passed away. No is negative – is our perception but I would like to introduce you to the positive no; the positive way to say, “No” with conviction and tenacity. Should I be able to say, “No!” without guilt? We like to please people but by saying, “No” at the right time is to be able to live with a light in your eyes even though you have turned down a worthy request.

Here are several reasons why “NO” needs to be your next answer:

To Have The Freedom To Say “Yes” To The More Important. When you refuse the insignificant and choose the important, you have just made a mature and essential choice. You have freed up your time to dive headlong into your vision and to intensify your efforts towards your dream. Doing what someone else deems important keeps me from doing what I feel is important. Ask yourself this question, Does this lead me to my important goals I have set?

To Relieve Stress, Anxiety, Worry And Fear. More to do will bring on more stress – give yourself some breathing room. Over committed translates underachieved. Set your focus around the necessary instead of the weighty. Ask yourself this question, Does this contribute to my stress or my delight?

  • Schedule your day, week and month with opportunities not jobs.
  • Set goals with liberty and room to reset the goal when necessary
  • Scratch items that can be delegated or dropped without repercussions

To Have More Thinking Time The ability to think is having a vacation in the mind. Writers, authors, speakers, leaders and pastors need time to think – creativity flows into spontaneous delivery. A short trip to the coffee shop, a walk in the park, or time with the family can have an amazing flow of energy and excitement back into the heart of the artist. Sometimes simply changing location will broaden your horizon. Ask yourself this question, Does this add to my life or subtract from my time?

To Enjoy Life Schedule time off, relax and enjoy moments of inactivity. This is one of my greatest difficulties is doing nothing. I am not advocating laziness or slothfulness nor procrastination but rest, sleep, relaxation and a day off. While writing a particular chapter in my last book, Highpoints, I had come to a place where my mind just wasn’t as sharp. My words were scrambled more than my eggs were for breakfast. I put on my jogging outfit and went for a couple of miles, upon returning fresh words filled my mind and I finished the chapter with greater ease than before. Ask yourself this question, Does this bless me or mess with me?

To Follow My Dream When pursuing the ideas of others I forfeit the dreams in my heart. To accomplish what the vision within me I must say, “No!” to the distractions around me. Don’t feel guilty about saying, “No,” when you are fulfilling the dreams within you. Focus is the supreme key to productivity. Ask yourself this question, Does this take me into my dream?

Comment: When do you say, No”?

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author. This post should not be construed as medical, legal or counseling advice.

New Book by blogger Josh Hood

3d_j_250x400I am introducing a new book by my good friend, Josh Hood.
 
What circumstances in your life right now would you call “bad”?
 
Maybe it’s a health condition. The doctor walked in and rocked your world with three little words: “You have cancer.” Or maybe a heart attack left you flat on your back saying, “Oh, that’s not good.”
 
Maybe it’s a financial need. You lost your job and you sit at a kitchen table littered with bills and invoices, running your fingers through your hair, and thinking, “Oh, that’s not good.”
Maybe it’s a strained relationship. A friendship you never thought would fall apart did. A marriage you thought was strong wasn’t. Your heart is broken, your cheeks are tear stained, and you’re crying out, “Oh, that’s not good!”
 
But maybe it’s not health, finances, or relational issues that are making you unhappy.
 
Maybe it’s something else. Whatever it is, it’s the part of your life that would not have been written this way if you were writing the story.
 
We look at these parts of our lives and label them “bad.” But I’ve discovered you and I are terrible at evaluating what is good or bad.
 
Some of God’s greatest blessings in your life are the times He has messed up your plans. Maybe you should write that down and stick it on your refrigerator, on your desk, or in your car.
 
That way, when things don’t go the way you planned and you’re tempted to label something bad, you can remember this truth.
 
God doesn’t mess up your plans out of vengeance or spite. He does it out of mercy.
Sometimes the worst things that happen to you are the best things that happen to you.
 
Blessings in Disguise is a reminder of God’s infinite sovereignty, even in the midst of pain, problems, and unwanted circumstances.
I hope you laugh. I hope you cry. But most of all, I hope you never see your problems the same way again.
 
Read his blogs here www.joshuamhood.com
 

Four IPad tricks to use today!

imagesSo you may be getting a new IPad for Christmas but you aren’t for sure about the features to utilize or maybe, to discover, I picked up my IPad in March 2012 and use it everyday for pleasure and for business. You will want to load the Adobe Reader, Facebook, Flipboard, Twitter, Smart Office 2, Kindle reader and LinkedIn from the ITunes Store on your first day of ownership. These items are the basic tools I use nearly everyday.

Transferring Your Desktop Files I Use Dropbox for my backup storage of important files on my desktop. Once Dropbox is loaded on your IPad (again, go to the ITunes store and download the app), also, go to the Dropbox website (Dropbox.com) and download the desktop version. Copy and paste the files you want in Dropbox. Now, go to your IPad and click on the Dropbox app – there are your files ready to open, view, and read. (I am assuming your IPad has a WiFi connection).

Creating an App Find a website you like to visit often but there isn’t an app available? Simply go to the website in your Safari browser. Once you have located the Home page of the website then go to the top left of your browser, there will be a small box with an arrow proceeding to the right of the box. Click on it and it will bring up a Mail selection you can email the link to someone) or send the page to Twitter, Facebook or other selections. Go to Add to Home Screen (the App is illustrated for you), click it and it will add the App to your Home screen.

ICloud I personally like to backup my information on the cloud (a remote server) so I have went to the settings app, scrolled down till I found ICloud, selected Storage and Backup and made sure ICloud was turned on. On the previous page select the programs you wish to backup, use sparingly, you only receive 5.0 GB free (you can purchase more later if you choose). I definitely wanted my Mail, Contacts, Calendars, Find my IPad, Photo Stream and Documents and Date in the ON position. Lose your IPad or upgrade later and you will be able to go to the ICloud for your information.

One more trick, get a protective cover. A friend of mine put his IPad on the top of his car, he forgot about it, until his wife called later after she had driven off, the IPad had slid down the back of the car onto the pavement, however, upon recovery, nothing was broken. Get a cover, today!

Comment: What is an IPad trick you use regularly?

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author

Facebooks Changes to Make Today

Qq6L1haQrYrFacebook  should have been named, “New Face Look” with the multiple changes and upgrades made over the last year. Some have been incremental others detrimental and others, just plain “mental!” Before you throw in the towel and give up on Facebook remember it is a unique contact book for finding your friends and sending them a quick message or seeing the 20 millionth picture of their grandkids, (ok, I plead, “guilty”).

Very quickly, let’s make three basic changes to your Facebook to help you feel a little more secure, have a little more sanity and have a little more ease when using Facebook.

I am using my IPad and on the top left of the News Feed on Facebook are three short horizontal bars. Click on it and you will find a long list of Favorites, Pages, Friends, Groups, Apps, and a few Account choices. Go to Account Settings and click to open. A new page will open with a list containing General, Notifications, Privacy etc., go to Privacy. Now, you will make three important choices:

Control Privacy When You Post You have three selections to choose to who you wish to post to; Public, Friends or Custom. I chose Friends; only the friends I have accepted to my Facebook account will see what I post.

Timeline and Tagging Who can post on your timeline? Here you can choose who can read your Timeline and who can Post on your Timeline. The one selection I made here I believe is worth repeating is the third question down, Review posts friends tag you in on your timeline. I selected ON. I want to be able to select the pictures and tags before they are posted on my Timeline.

Blocked People and Apps Click on Manage blocking and a new page should appear. This is a permanent block that keeps hackers, spammers or “just plain rude” people from coming to your Facebook page.

Comment: Have you found this post helpful? Are there changes you have made to your Facebook account that you would like to share?

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author

Rescue Your Finances Before the Holiday Crush

moneyMoney is either a blessing or a curse. Either the surplus of it or the lack of it. Nothing separates friends, spouses and relationships like money. The holiday seasons seem to drain what little money we do have. We have worked hard and we spend freely because we deserve a few nice things. The problem is – credit burns. Black debits follow Black Friday. We spend more than we want to get less than we need. You can’t find simple solutions to hard problems but there are three simple changes to help ease the “money burden” of the holiday season.

Save Some Plan to put a little money back every payday, even if it is only $5.00. Five dollars a week with buy a good tire in three months. Five dollars a week in six months will buy a good used wash machine. Five dollars a week for a year is $240.00 – now that’s a nice start for next years Christmas.

Spend Little Real hard, you say. Yes, but let’s cut it into bite size pieces.

  • Take a list and only buy what is on the list.
  • Don’t go to the store when you are hungry.
  • Make your speciality coffees at home. Google the recipes.
  • Use coupons.
  • Take only the amount of cash you can spend.

Think More Find creative ways to make money or to spend less. One woman made purses out of left over scrap material, sold them and made extra holiday cash. One lady made pumpkin rolls by taking orders from area businesses. One woman did holiday decorating for others, another sold Avon, another cleaned houses for the holidays. Yes, you can do it!

Comment: Can you think of another way to make some holiday cash?

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author

Gratitude is a Life Changer

Someone shared this quote from the popular TV show, Duck Dynasty, “One day you are happy, happy, happy and the next day you are crabby, crabby, crabby.” Being thankful can change the elasticity of your spirit.

November is the month of Thanksgiving but thankfulness is a lifestyle not a holiday. Being thankful and letting it flow from your heart is definitely a life changer. We must admit having gratitude in the middle of a struggle is difficult to accomplish but it can be done.

Here is how to change your “crabby, crabby, crabby” into “happy, happy, happy.”

You Have Things All Around You To Be Thankful For You won’t have to go far. Have you ever played “slug bug?” On a long trip my brother and I would preoccupy ourselves with a simply game of “slug bug.” If you see a Volkswagen Beetle you get to “slug’ the person next to you. The game stopped when the person getting “slugged” the most decided it was time to play “I see something red.” It is amazing what you see when you begin to look for it. When you begin to look for something to be thankful, you begin to notice more things you are thankful for.

Here are just a few things you can begin to be thankful for.

  • Life
  • Friends
  • Health
  • Home
  • Food
  • Family
  • Freedom
  • God

 

Sharing Is The Greatest Way to Show Thanks W. Clement Stone said, If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share. The busiest time for the Salvation Army is during the holidays – share some time serving. Stress is at an all time high from November through December – share some time praying for others. Real needs of food, clothing, and high utility bills are felt by single mothers – share some money with them.  

Remember Who Loves YouWe have friends, both old and new, who have stood with us through the test of time. Call them or write a handwritten note of appreciation. Think of someone who recently went through a hard time physically and listen to their story – healing comes through them talking about it.  

I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and the new – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Give Thanks to God For His BlessingsContentment is destroyed by comparison. Some complain because they don’t have what someone else may have but be thankful for what God has given you. He has blessed you far more than you deserve and given you far more than you really need. Storm Jameson confessed, For what I have received may the Lord make me truly thankful, and more truly for what I have not received.  Start your day be giving thanks for all the blessings you have received in your life – it will change your day, it can change your life.

Comment: What are you most thankful for?

Copyright by Jim Laudell. Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author

Previewing the Galley Proof

The Galley Proof may be the most important part of the publishing experience. Many will say “you can’t judge a book by its cover” but you can judge a book by its interior. The proof must be exactly the way you want the interior of your book to look once published.

The Galley Proof is the last opportunity to examine the interior of the manuscript before the “sign off” sheet before the manuscript goes to print. Before you sign the “sign off” sheet here are a few things you need to check.

Make sure the manuscript is the last manuscript you sent to the check in coordinator Small changes may have been made at the last-minute and it is important to make sure those last-minute changes made it to the interior designer.

Check for detail and for overall design  It is easy to fall in love with the design and the feeling of accomplishment that small details go unnoticed. Designers are not editors. Read the text for clarity, flow, bold face and italics typing, column headers and footnote calibration. The details of each are important to give your book a professional feeling.

Make sure the blank pages are correct Title pages need to always start on the odd page, (1,3,5.7, etc.) Behind each section heading a blank page may need to be added so the chapter title begins on the odd page. A good design team is able to add blank pages to make the flow and feel of the manuscript better rather than cramped together.

Check proper spacing There should be enough space between paragraphs, illustrations and sketches or photos (if used) to provide a comfortable feeling to the interior design. Crowding the text makes for an uncomfortable read.

Easy text font The font can change the mood of the book, the font must express the tone of the manuscript and be comfortable reading for the reader.

Read and reread No doubt you are ready to have a published book in your hand but like a pregnant woman waiting for a baby you can go on a walk but usually the baby comes when the baby is ready. Read and reread the text. It is better to spend time reading and rereading than it is swallow your pride later when a mistake has been made.

Don’t announce the publication of your book You will celebrate – don’t celebrate too early.Wait till the publisher has announced a print date before you post a sale, book signing or announcement of availability. The printing may still be out 4 to 6 weeks. Patience is a virtue and one that is difficult to attain at this point in the publishing process. Take your time but be quick to meet any deadlines. Don’t linger or delay but work calmly through the process.

Now, go get another cup of coffee and preview your Galley Proof.

Comment Below:What stage of your manuscript are you at today?

Copyright by Jim Laudell.  Materials may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written permission from the author. You may share on Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media while giving credit to the author.