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Pastors spend lots of time pouring into their members’ lives, but people don’t always pour into theirs. Pastors need encouragement and support just as much as anyone else, though! They need to hear from their members that they’re doing a great job, that their work matters, and that their leadership is valuable to the people they serve. A pastor who believes that is just a better leader, period. And it leads to a healthier church.
You could be an encourager to your pastor. You could be the person who leads your church to a healthier place. Yes, you.
Here are four powerful leadership principles from four influential Christian leaders. Read them for yourself—then share them with your pastor if you recognize these principles in their own leadership . Let them know they’re doing great, and encourage them to keep growing their faith, leadership and congregation. They need to hear this from you!
1. Dave Ramsey: Slow and Steady Matters
When it comes to building your team—and making sure you have the right people on it—Dave Ramsey has learned that being selective matters. And just like it’s true with Dave’s business, it’s true with a pastor’s ministry.
“Want to know the best way to grow your ministry? Take a lesson from The Tortoise and the Hare. We live in a fast-and-furious, microwave-cooking, gotta-have-it-now world. Stop. Slow down. Take a breath. You won’t save the world overnight. You won’t win over your entire congregation with one sermon. You’re running a marathon—not a sprint. Make long-term plans and short-term course corrections as you go.”
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2. Donald Miller: Creating Buy-In Through Story
Donald Miller gained popularity with his books, but his masterful storytelling has spilled over into business. He’s using his gift for story to teach business owners and pastors alike how to use storytelling to win customers, sell ideas, and—if you’re leading a church—cast your vision.
“We all love stories because we are living, breathing protagonists within stories ourselves. The problem is, most of our stories are boring. When a pastor stands up and invites us into a terrific narrative, we migrate toward that leader and engage. We aren’t just telling stories from the pulpit, we are creating them and inviting people to step inside those stories. The living of a story, then, transforms our congregations.”
3. Chris Brown: The Power of a Debt-Free Congregation
As an executive pastor on staff at two large churches, Chris Brown has seen firsthand the impact of church members’ debt—and debt freedom—on church ministry. As part of Dave Ramsey’s team, Chris now speaks on the importance of biblical stewardship at churches and conferences nationwide.
“The average American can’t see beyond their next paycheck. They can’t see the needs of the church, problems in their marriage or with their kids, not even their own need for a deeper connection with Christ. Until we get serious about teaching them how to dig out of debt and live with margin and peace, we’ll continue to lead churches filled with just 10–20 percent of people fully engaged. Debt might be the number one thing holding churches back, but I like to look at it as the number one opportunity for ambitious, strong leaders to transform their churches.”
4. Louie Giglio: Casting a Vision for Generosity
Louie Giglio’s leadership reaches across multiple platforms. As an author, speaker, megachurch pastor and founder of the Passion Movement, Louie has cast a lot of vision over his lifetime. Here’s how he explains God’s view on generosity—and why it’s something to be celebrated, not avoided.
“Generosity makes people nervous, but it shouldn’t! What we get to be a part of is crazy. As the psalmist says, ‘The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.’ The fact that God comes to us to borrow something that already belongs to Him is amazing. God doesn’t need anything! But generosity is our opportunity to take part in His story. It’s how Jesus intends to come into our towns and cities. That is amazing.”
If you think your pastor would enjoy hearing more principles like these (of if you’re a pastor yourself and know you would!) then check out the Stewardship Conference this May 2–4 in Nashville, Tennessee. Pastors from across the country will join Dave, Donald, Chris and Louie—plus other great speakers—for encouragement, inspiration and information on how to be the leaders God’s calling them to be. Your pastor can register today to attend!