41 Things Ministers Ought to Know (Part 2)

(More on the list of what ministers ought to know.  See the earlier post.)

11. Be very careful about what you say in humor.  You never know what a person has gone through in her/his early years.

12. Avoid self-pity.  You are not the only one who works hard and who doesn’t get support at work.  Nothing is more pathetic than a minister who is full of self-pity.

13. Read!  Read for comfort.  Read to be challenged.  This is essential for freshness.

14. Know that you are dispensable.  Don’t take yourself too serious.  After all, if you are hit by a Dr. Pepper truck today, the church will soon replace you.

15. Guard what comes from your mouth.  When people tell you something, it is critical that you keep their trust.  Ask yourself before speaking, “If this person knew I was about to tell what she said yesterday, would she be surprised or even hurt?”

16. Cultivate and nurture your friendships.  This work can be very, very lonely.  Your friends will help you get through.

17. Take advantage of e-mail.  It is a great way to communicate details.  However, it is no substitute for a real, face to face conversation.

18. Play to your strengths.  No one can do everything well.  What do you do particularly well?

19. Know where the land mines are in the church.  Believe me—they are there. 

20. Stay away from anything that even remotely resembles manipulation.  Remember that love and manipulation are two very different ways of treating people.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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4 thoughts on “41 Things Ministers Ought to Know (Part 2)

  1. Greg,
    I’ve done the same kind of thing. The first time I remember saying something with humor without really thinking, I hurt a young woman’s feelings. In my effort to “get a laugh” I was not even thinking about how a woman bearing some pain could hear that.

  2. I like your points very much. I am very disappointed in my life because I’m a pastor at heart but this never panned out. I can see from what limited experience I’ve had how what you’re saying here is so true.

  3. Thanks Ted–I know there are many others who could echo what you said. A “pastor at heart” but for a number of reasons it never panning out. Yet, God has a way of using us even when the situation we woulud have liked just doesn’t work out.