Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Three Things Rural, Southern Churches Desperately Need From Their Pastors

I have a hunch that you’ve never heard the greatest preacher in America. He’s likely never written a book, he probably has 35 Twitter followers and he leads a tiny congregation about forty-five miles west of nowhere. He’s not well known but he’s faithful; God is using him and his church is blessed.

But the same can’t be said for the pastor of every rural church. I live in an area covered up with church buildings. With so many churches, you would think that every marriage in our community is thriving and that we’re on our third consecutive year of revival. But, that’s not the case. Homes are wrecked here just like anywhere else and, sadly, revival is a date on the calendar rather than a genuine work of the Holy Spirit.

There are many reasons for this but one of them is poor leadership. That is, some (many?) rural, southern churches seem to be led by pastors who care more about pleasing the congregational power brokers than they do about pleasing God.

Rather than a hireling or someone just passing the time until a better offer from the city comes along, rural churches need pastors who would rather be fired for doing God’s will rather than going along to get along. Tickling itching ears isn’t reserved only for false prophets; it’s a popular practice among those hoping to hold onto their position.

I write this not from ivory suburban towers nor hallowed academic halls. I write from a life much-lived in rural, southern areas and ministry practiced here. While the same needs may exist in other areas around the country, here are three things that southern, rural churches desperately need from their pastors. Read More

Related Articles:
How Can Members of Rural Churches Engage Culture?
Four Mistakes Rural Pastors Make (That All Pastors Need to Avoid)
Plow Around that Stump
Four Methods of Church Revitalization

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