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February 15, 2018

Lies Pastors Believe

By Daniel Im

*Plus Members can listen to this entire Behind-The-Scenes interview by logging in and clicking here.

The Truth

I know it’s hard to believe, but pastors are human too. Like the rest of us, pastors are susceptible to believing lies. Lying is the native language of our heart, which started back in the Garden of Eden. Although pastors constantly teach about truth and love, they also wrongly assume that they are not susceptible to lies. It’s easy for pastors to consume themselves with the lies that the congregation believes and urge them to see the truth of God’s Word. However, it takes a strong pastor to realize the lies that they believe themselves.

Dayton Hartman first had this realization in seminary when he looked at fellow seminary students and questioned how they could believe lies about themselves and their ministry. From there, he started cataloging the lies that he believes and wrote a book to help pastors navigate through this uncharted territory.

Lies Pastors Believe

One of the most prevalent lies that pastors believe is that they must earn their worth. Pastors start to view their identity by achieving a respectable goal and gaining affirmation through achievement. Many pastors forget that they are affirmed in Christ and want to pursue avenues of ministry that other people will affirm them in. Some pastors lived radically sinful lives before they were saved by Jesus and feel the need to achieve a great ministry goal to earn God’s favor. This lie was Dayton’s motivation to write Lies Pastors Believe.

One way for pastors to fight against the lie of the achiever is to seek biblical counseling. It is crucial for a pastor to have a safe place to feel comfortable talking through their struggles. An advisory council needs to be able to ask the pastor the hard questions. What is your motivation? What are you trying to achieve? Without this help, pastors go on believing the lies that their worth is the goals that they achieve or the churches that they plant.

The infamous “Castaway Lie” tends to lead to pastors putting themselves on an island. There’s a lie that by being a pastor, you are not allowed to be a friend to your co-workers. People believe that by being a friend to your team, you are undermining your leadership. Pastors will destroy their leadership team if they choose to operate on their own.

Pastors need to build community with the leadership team. It’s important to move in unison and live life together. That is the gospel community at play. However, if the senior pastor is unwilling to facilitate relationships with the leadership team, it is the responsibility of the team to create those relationships. Pastors should start by having a hard conversation with the senior pastor telling them that you desire a relationship. Pursue the lay people of the church and leadership team to pursue relationships. When you deny your need for community, you are denying your humanity. Community and relationships are so important for a healthy church.

To read the remainder of this article and to listen to the entire Behind-The-Scenes segment with Dayton Hartman, click here for the full post.

This video is part of Plus Membership. To get full access to it, and much more, I encourage you to become a Plus Member. Click here to see all the benefits of becoming a Plus Member.

Tweetables:

  • “Native language of our heart is lying.”-@daytonhartman
  • “Some pastors try to make up for what they did in the past by achieving a great ministry goal.”-@daytonhartman
  • “When you believe the lie of the achiever, you think you are earning Jesus’ love.”-@daytonhartman
  • “Find a place to feel comfortable talking through the emotional wounds of your past.”-@daytonhartman
  • “You need community with the people on your leadership team.”-@daytonhartman
  • “When you deny your need for community, you are denying your humanity.”-@daytonhartman

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Daniel Im

Daniel Im (@danielsangi) is the Founder of NewChurches.com and the Director of Church Multiplication for LifeWay Christian Resources. He is a Teaching Pastor at The Fellowship, a multisite church in Nashville. He is the author of No Silver Bullets: Five Small Shifts that will Transform Your Ministry, and co-author of Planting Missional Churches: Your Guide to Starting Churches that Multiply (2nd ed) with Ed Stetzer. He also co-hosts the New Churches Q&A Podcast, the 5 Leadership Questions Podcast, and a brand new podcast with his wife on marriage and parenting called the IMbetween Podcast. He has an M.A. in Global Leadership and has served and pastored in church plants and multisite churches ranging from 100 people to 50,000 people in Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal, Korea, Edmonton, and Nashville. Visit Danielim.com to learn more.

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