It’s no secret, sometimes next generation leaders find themselves in some pretty tense relationships with their senior pastors. Just go to any conference and sit around listen to both senior pastors and staff members and you will hear stories of relational struggle and tension. Truth is that if I was Satan (not a good gig!) I would find ways to destroy the connection between lead pastors and their staff leaders. When church leadership is focused on fighting they are are not going to give their all to serve the community and reach people with the message of Jesus.
We can sit around and play the blame game with why next generation leaders and pastors often struggle to connect but why not just take ownership of the issue and begin to fight for healthy relationships on our church staffs? From your leadership role you can fight for a healthy staff. Health has to be developed and here are 7 ways you can support that process with your lead pastor…
- Encourage Consistently / Your lead pastor needs to know you believe in them. They can say they serve for an audience of one all they want but every lead pastor needs to know the people closest to them believe in them as leaders. A simple email, a hand written note, or a simple thanks in the hall can communicate that you are with them.
- Pray / Your senior pastor needs you to pray for them every day. Your relationship with your leadership will change when you start supporting them with prayer. Nothing of eternal importance happens without prayer going before it.
- Cast Vision / Your lead pastor can’t be the only one casting the vision and mission of your church. Don’t just cast your ministry vision, share the church’s vision with the same passion!
- Do Your Job Well / Seriously work hard at being the best pastor you can be. When you do your job well you make your lead pastor’s life better.
- Don’t Get Tunnel Vision / Don’t get so focused on your ministry area that you forget that your lead pastor is shepherding the entire ministry scope of the church you serve. Think big picture as much as you focus on your area of leadership.
- Publicly Respect and Support / You carry leadership weight as a staff member. Respect and support your lead pastor publicly even when you disagree with some of their leadership moves. Public support leads to private influence with your lead pastor.
- Limit Surprises / Your lead pastor gets enough surprises from the congregation every week so do not add surprises from your ministry to his life. Keep your senior pastor up to date with what is going on in your ministry.
What are some ways you have discovered to help keep your relationship with your lead pastor healthy? How are you fighting for a healthy staff culture?