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My last year to serve in the professional position of Sr. Pastor in a Church was in 2005. When you’re in that saddle, about the only thing you’re able to see is how to survive your own experience of leadership. Dr. Drucker used to say that there is only one person in the large Church experience who has any idea what’s going on… that’s the lead Pastor. And, that Pastor really has no idea what’s going on, because of the sociological complexity of the large Church. When he said that to me, I was so relieved to know that someone out there really understood…and that it was OK that I was barely hanging on!
Since leaving the Church machine, I’ve had lots of time and freedom to observe, think, and speak into the Jesus movement that is orbiting around the Church, the community, the corporate, and political worlds. The more I look, the more concerns I have with what’s going on and not going on today.
The greatest concern is that leadership is more and more scarce. As I read and examine books on the future and relevance of the Church and training materials for the ever popular small groups, it’s so clear to me that the end-game of these materials is all about numbers and membership in the organized Church.
The lack of attention on leadership development is most discouraging. The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers. I’ve been grappling with leadership development in Africa, yet coming home, we’ve been face to face with several of the “best” and “biggest” Churches in southern California, where the weakest link is embarrassingly, leadership development! Oh, there are thousands of followers, but where are the leaders?
Why is this happening? Stay tuned for what I’m thinking….