3 Important Traits of Successful Pastors

Let me start off by saying, I have an incredible amount of respect for those in the ministry.

If you’re a pastor who is trying your best, you’re well on your way to being successful.

I’m a bit nervous to use the term successful because everyone has their own definition of what success looks like.

For the purpose of this post, I’m defining successful pastors as those who have a congregation who is willing to follow their lead.

Successful pastors are able to get things done because they have the support of their congregation.

If you’ve been trying to convince your church to go away from Sunday school and towards small groups and they aren’t budging, then for the purpose of this post, you’d be defined as unsuccessful.

You may be a great person, incredible speaker, and well liked, but if the congregation isn’t willing to follow your lead, then you’ve not been successful.

So, how can we change that?

What are the traits that you need in order for people to be willing to follow you?

  • Show them you care.

John Maxwell says, “You have to touch a heart, before you ask for a hand.” This is so true. If you want people to respect and follow you, they have to feel loved by you. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to visit everyone in the hospital or go to every funeral, but you need to make sure that people know that they are noticed and that they matter. Some pastors make it all about themselves and want to make themselves look important. Successful pastors make others see that they are the ones who are important.

  • Exude enough passion to inspire.

You don’t want to just motivate people; you want to inspire them. Motivated people will quickly lose their motivation. People who are inspired learn to live it out. What inspires people? Being humble and not prideful. Being engaged and not disinterested. Being stable and not chaotic. Being confident and not timid. And make sure what you say you value lines up with the way you live.

  • Empower others to use their gifts.

You can’t do everything, and you shouldn’t. God has placed people in your church for a reason. Be willing to hand off ministry to others. And don’t just give people a to do list, actually give them the authority to make decisions. Learn how to trust people. The best way to do that is to just trust them. Everyone has to start somewhere. Focus on what only you can do, and delegate the rest.

If you’ll develop these three traits, you’ll find that people will be much more willing to follow you. And when people are willing to follow you, you can better accomplish the vision God has given you for your church.

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