Many pastors feel as though there is not enough time to get everything accomplished. Many experience burnout. Many feel as though they do not have enough time for sermon preparation. Why is this? One of the primary reasons is that pastors are more focused on doing all of the ministry rather than equipping the saints to the do the work of the ministry (Ephesians 4:12).
Here are 3 reasons pastors should focus more on equipping.
1- It gets more people involved in the ministry.
As pastors, we should want more people to be involved in the work of the ministry. It is a sign that people are growing spiritually. When people simply sit back and expect the pastor to do it all, it limits the involvement of others. It creates a mindset that says “the pastor is here to be my personal chaplain.” While the pastor is certainly involved in this aspect of ministry, the goal should be for all church members to be involved in serving each other.
2- It propels growth.
There is a growth barrier created whenever the pastor is expected to do all the member care aspect of ministry. The church will never grow beyond a pastor’s ability to be personally involved in every life. This is a key reason why the growth in many churches stalls. The way to remove this barrier is to equip others to assist in this aspect of ministry.
3- It multiplies the effectiveness and impact of your ministry.
As more people become involved in ministering to others (both inside and outside the church), the impact of your ministry grows. More lives are touched, more visits are made, more serving is accomplished, and more ministry and outreach takes place.
4- It’s Biblical.
This is not just a church growth strategy, it is a biblical truth. Ephesians 4:12 clearly states that God gave pastors to the church in order to equip the saints to do the work of the ministry. In Acts 6, deacons were selected to do the member-care aspect of the ministry so that pastors could focus more on the ministry of the Word and prayer. When this does not take place, we ignore the clear teaching of Scripture.
Please understand, I am not suggesting that pastors not be involved in the visiting and member care aspect of ministry. I am saying that by getting other people involved in this, you enhance your church’s potential to grow and impact lives.