Thursday, February 04, 2010

Top 10 Things You Need to Know in Ministry that aren't taught!

I'm learning more and more that ministry is about learning from the school of hard knocks rather than what you get in Seminary or Bible College/ Christian University.

I. Conflict Resolution. There will be conflict. I'm thankful for the exposure I had with Peacemaker Ministries and the training. Great resource by Ken Sande.

II. Financial Management. Not just personal but church budgets. With thousands and thousands of dollars coming in ... it is good to know the variety line items and how to allocate wisely and be a manager of the money God has entrusted. It isn't an easy task to work with a non-profit organization and keep all the budget items straight.

III. Mentoring. I wish as I began ministry there was more mentors for those in ministry. Have an ongoing mentorship peer to peer. This is what I think the Fusion Groups from VEF are turning into. wish I had them earlier in my ministry and every preacher/ youth minister would have one.

IV. Counseling resources. As to a database what Christian counsellors are out there, refer, and what ones can ministers use too and what resources they can have in case of hurt, burnout etc. Invaluable. I'm just learning of some now - after 15 yrs.

V. Better Time Management. It is all about balance. Something I don't do well. Either I'm very busy or I've seen alot the opposite direction. I want to balance my time with family. I try to continually take blocks of time off and my Day off. I wasn't good at this when I first started in ministry.

VI. Resources for my Soul. Sure Bible college/ Seminary help give you some tools for the personal journey but putting them into practice. I'm finding more joy in the Spiritual disciplines. Reading God's Word - not just for a lesson but for myself. It has taken some time to get there and I'm still getting there.

VI. Job Descriptions. Knowing the variety of jobs and resources and policies to do them. There are a variety of expectations and job descriptions from minister to leader to secretary to youth worker. I think a lot of headaches can be avoided if expectations and qualifications written out and know what is expected.

VII. Policy and Procedures. Sure this varies from church to church but there needs to be some policies thought out on Child Safety, to Emergency evacuation to a handbook on church polity etc. I think the better organization and the more administration - and tools can be helpful.

VIII. Administration and Leadership. There is a lot behind the scenes of a church that needs more leaders and better leaders. It usually starts from the staff. The elders are usually volunteers who have shepherds' hearts and can lead, but also look for direction as well.

IX. Facility Management. Insurance, Utilities, Gas lines, cleaning up rooms, buying goods, Worship supplies, Sound systems, computer equipment, vans, etc. These things aren't taught. There isn't a week go by that we don't re- arrange something for storage, more room for students, supplies etc. A lot of this is learned the hard way. Like what to do if you have a break in? what do do if an accusation arises? How to improve your facility? do you have the right tools? should we add or not add? Capital Campaign funds etc.

X. It is all about Jesus. Sometimes I think we forget that. I know it has been some time since I've been to Bible College - but more and more I see some guys excited about planting new churches, or wanting to be the next Mega Super star ...rather than just be who God created them to be and give the credit to Jesus.

Some Resources:

Applying for Your First Church - David A. Enyart

Making Sense of the Ministry - Wiersbe

10 Things Every Minister needs to know - Ronnie Floyd

Things They don't Teach you at Bible College
But you really really need to know about YM - Todd Clark

Things They Never Taught You in Seminary - Deborah and James Bushfield.

what the Bible Says to the Minister.


dsrowles said...

I have tried to be a mentor to you over the past few years but have failed to always provide good help.

As an older follower of Christ I see what you are doing now, and where you have come from, and I marvel at the work you are doing. It is not easy but Christ is working through you to reach the lost and keep you streaching yourself in His direction.

Keep up the good work.

Gman said...

Thanks Doug. I've had a few good people put in my life to help in the midst of the struggles.

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