What God expects from His pastors is clearly spelled out in the Bible.  And numerous books and resources have been written about the role and responsibilities of the pastor. They include things like loving the congregation, preaching effectively, casting a vision, healthy leadership, being transparent and modeling evangelism just to name a few off the top of my head. I agree with those. I agree with others that I did not mention.

As a change of pace, however, I thought I would share my thoughts on what I want and expect, from the members and regular attenders of Northstar. This is a departure for me since I believe that what God expects from each of us is far more important than what we expect from each other.  Having said that here is my list on what I expect from members and regular attenders:

  1. To not expect me to live up to what the Bible says a Christian should be.
  2. And certainly not expect me to live up to what the Bible says a pastor should be and do (that seems a little unreasonable).
  3. To be attentive to what God is trying to tell us when I teach.
  4. To never be distracted, bored, fall asleep, when I am teaching.
  5. To never compare me with any other pastor or preacher, unless it’s in a positive way.
  6. To do what I ask them to do and go where I ask them to go.
  7. To always pray for me.
  8. To think my children are perfect and wonderful.
  9. To read every article, or blog I write, and like them.
  10. To speak glowingly to everyone they know about how wonderful I am.
  11. To bring people to my church every week in order to make the church grow in a way that will break all records (so that I too can be featured in Christian magazines and go on speaking tours).
  12. To be an FSU fan.
  13. And never to think I‘m ever being selfish expecting these things!

I hope you realize I was kidding and that list is mostly tongue-in-cheek. However, a few were things I would want from Northstar members and regular attenders. The fact is, we wouldn’t be where we are as a church without the support and contributions of all those who attend Northstar.

Thank you for your generosity. We see it weekly and in our Bold Love initiative. Thank you for serving. This is one “thank you” I never want to see lost in our “we need more volunteers” pleas. Our greeters, children’s teachers, nursery caregivers, worship tech team members, small group leaders, coffee brewers, ushers, and parking teams teams need to know that they make a difference. You really do.

Thank you for your commitment to Northstar. To church members who stayed, served, gave, and supported Northstar through our growing years, I need to say, “Thank you. You are teammates. It is an honor to be on your team.” Thank you for inviting your friends and family. The church grows primarily by word of mouth. Changed people are contagious. I love hearing on Sunday morning, “I started coming to Northstar because  my friend invited me.”

And thank you for allowing me to be me. In the past 17 years of preaching I have tried to emulate Rick Warren, Andy Stanley, Francis Chan, Perry Noble to name just a few.  By far, I am at my best when I am me.