12 Witnesses

Let these stones be a witness to what we have done here this day.

Why I appreciate Pastors by Marty Duren

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Marty’s got a new Examiner article up focusing on Pastor Appreciation Month (October is it, by the way).

Good article with an excellent representation of a hard working pastor and his family:

Why I Appreciate Pastors

Dealing with Staff Opposition: Stuff over which you have little control

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*Obligatory Disclaimer:  I am not under fire here at Skelly.  I LOVE my church and am the happiest I have ever been in ministry.  This post comes from a series of conversations with other ministers who are dealing with opposition within their church.

I have dealt with much opposition in my time that has resulted in everything from being pressured to leave and moving on to sticking it out and developing a truly loving relationship.  This is some of what I have learned.

One more thing, this series assumes that you are faithfully praying and obedient to God in the midst of everything.  If you are failing in either of those two areas, your only hope is in yourself.  In other words, you are doomed.

Very little control:

In these areas, beyond your attempts at building relationships, you have no control over the response.

  1. Staff support.  This is especially true if you are secondary staff.
  2. Gossip.
  3. Power brokers.  Especially if they dislike you.
  4. Withholding finances in opposition to your presence.

You may want to contribute a few more in the comment section.

I am not, of course, endorsing or validating any of these things, but have seen them in my ministry and in the ministry of others.  They are realities.

Dealing with them:

There is one option that can be exercised at two times in dealing with these issues (again, in addition to prayer, obedience and seeking reconciliation).  You can choose not to be in the situation.

There have been a couple of times in ministry where, despite an almost masochistic commitment to stick it out, I came to the conclusion to leave the situation.  This was, of course after seeking God’s leadership and sensing that He was indeed moving me on.

It took me a while to learn that I could and should exercise this option on the front end of a relationship.  No matter how bad the situation where you are is, situations that are equally as bad or worse are available to you right now.

When I moved to Skelly two years ago, I had been convinced God was leading me to move for two years.  My satisfaction with the position I held was very low.  In fact, I had seen the church through some very rough times and yet had some people turn on me when the opportunity arose.

Nevertheless, I got into several serious conversations with other churches and turned them all down.  I didn’t let the pain of the moment push me to another unhealthy situation.  I continued to resolve every issue to the best of my ability where I was and pursue the opportunity I believed God had for me.

After two years, Skelly Drive came along.  While this church is not perfect and I have had to deal with the same issues every church has, Skelly has the unique ability to get along.  They were passionate about unity and willing resolve issues in a Biblical way.

Holding out for a great church to partner with may be the best thing you EVER do to manage opposition to your leadership.

Got Missional? Need a place to do it?

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Skelly Drive, the church where I am Lead Pastor is staffing up and we are looking for some folks with the same heart for reaching the world that we have with ideas on how we can do it.  Keep in mind that we are transitioning to a Missional mindset and aren’t there, yet, but are making some pretty big strides.  We are ready for some others with similar vision to help us formulate the our church structure as we progress.

We are trying to fill these positions:

Young Adult/Worship Pastor:

This is a full time paid position that will combine the coordination and leadership of our worship ministry (including technology, drama and, of course, music) and pastoral leadership in reaching the young adults of our area (college through 29ish).  Our worship style is more contemporary with an occasional hymn that has been reworked with a more modern style.

This is a Pastoral position and the candidate will need to meet the qualifications of Pastor/Overseer from Scripture.  The candidate will also need a Missional mindset and be ready/willing to pour their heart into helping this church become the outwardly focused, servant natured, Acts 1:8 engaged body of believers that God has called us to be.

For more information on this position or to submit a resume, you may contact the search committee chair, Bret Carder.  You can email the committee at:  vicki@sdbctulsa.com.  You can snail mail him at the church:  Skelly Drive Baptist Church, 8504 E. Skelly Drive, Tulsa, OK 74129.  Our church’s website is:  sdbctulsa.com.

Minister to Youth:

This is a part time paid position for someone to shepherd our teenagers.  In addition to Youth Ministry obligations that go with most churches, the candidate for this job will have to help channel our teenagers’ passion to reach the community. Several have surrendered to a call to missions or ministry and are actively pursuing that right now as well as leading the group in several activities in an attempt to reach our neighborhood.

For more information on this position or to submit a resume, you may contact the search committee chair, Shannon Carder.  You can email her at:  shannon@martinpaintandbody.com.  You can snail mail her at the church:  Skelly Drive Baptist Church, 8504 E. Skelly Drive, Tulsa, OK 74129.  Our church’s website is:  sdbctulsa.com.

Minister to Children:

This is a part time paid position for someone to shepherd our children.  We are currently engaged in reaching our neighborhood school, Skelly Elementary, run a great Awana program on Wednesday night, have a Young Musicians choir that meets on Sunday night.  We need someone to provide some leadership in coordinating events, training leaders and helping us think through the discipleship of our children.

For more information on this position or to submit a resume, you may contact the search committee chair, Jane Ethridge.  You can email her at:  jandlethridge@cox.net.  You can snail mail her at the church:  Skelly Drive Baptist Church, 8504 E. Skelly Drive, Tulsa, OK 74129.  Our church’s website is:  sdbctulsa.com.

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