Pastors Q & A

Question Number One

“What’s one thing you’re currently doing in ministry, that you wish you had started years ago?”

Q and A Image

“Saying no and trusting others. I said yes to every speaking opportunity. I said yes to fill every void and need (Sunday School teacher, Missions leader, etc) I said yes to every meeting. I said yes to every activity. Which was basically saying no to my wife. No to my daughter. No to my family. And most importantly, no to God. I was doing so much I had zero time to invest in the relationships that mattered most. One reason was because I didn’t trust. I thought in order for it to be done right, I had to do it.” – Cody Hogden, First Baptist Church Orangefield

My answer may be more philosophical than practical but what I wished that I had done early on in my ministry was to spend more time understanding the culture and how people learn. I simply thought a well prepared sermon would be effective. But if my speaking style is not conducive to a listener’s ability to learn; then I am not being the most effective I can be. I may reach some older people or some younger people who have been versed in the “old” style of teaching, but I won’t be able to reach the unchurched or unsaved adult. What you notice in the hunting world is really good hunters spend more time scouting and understanding their prey than they do hunting it. They have discovered that success is not determined by the amount of time they spend hunting but the amount of time they spend understanding the practices of the prey they are after. If they know their prey, harvesting it is simple. I spent too much time “hunting” and not enough time “scouting.” – Gary Miller, Locus Church

I am currently the only full time pastor in our church. So we started doing a Tuesday evening conference call for all the pastors to review the weekend and discuss future plans. I wish I had began this much sooner as it has helped build community and trust on our team. The guys have told me how valuable it makes them feel. Ben Fugate, Journey Christian Church

I wish I did better at adjusting time spent doing ministry work and family. I often validated my actions towards neglecting family by blaming it on God and His work. I have a better understanding that God wants both aspects of my life to be healthy. It’s not a one-or-the-other situation. – Jeremiah Marshall, Gospel Outreach Community Church

I would say daily reading, reading a Proverb a day, weekly learning from resources/podcasts/sermons (including T.E.D. talks or sources that sometimes aren’t necessarily Christian), creating a detailed weekly schedule that is centered around my God given purpose/roles, and reading leader blog posts would definitely be something that I wish I started years ago. So, in a nutshell: Growing myself in disciplines and wisdom. — Brandon Petty, Generation Church

I would say the most important thing I am doing now and not then was paying close attention to the pace of my life. Making sure like creation, there is a sustainable rhythm to my days and week. Some seasons the days are much longer like summer. However, I must consciously look for seasons where the days are shorter and the nights are longer. Just like winter. Whatever pace works for a person is the pace they should follow. But everyone must find a pace or they won’t last through all the seasons of ministry ahead. – Gregg Farrell, Crossland Community Church

#1 Deeper spiritual focus early morning prayer and fasting.   #2 Ask better questions. #3 Committed study day that is in concrete(early in the week). #4 Sermon series planning staying a quarter ahead. – Duane Garner, New Vision Ministries

Did a staycation this year, it was incredible. Wish I would have taken more time off. Even if you can’t afford to leave town, take a staycation where you turn off the phone, enjoy your family, and catch up on projects. – Allen Bonnell, Immanuel Baptist Church

I would say rest and reloading. scheduling time to distress so u and your family have finish lines to run to. That’s something I wish I learned earlier in life and ministry. – Dustin Thompson, Refuge Church

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