What I Really Want For Christmas

Over the next few weeks, congregations will be taking up love offerings (hint, hint) and gifting their pastors with nativity-scene Christmas ornaments, sweaters, neckties, baked goods, and framed pictures of the church building.

Christmas wish listSome pastors have no problems articulating their Christmas wishes (I’m one of them).  However, some may be sheepish about their requests or feel awkward sharing their wishes.

But what do pastors really want for Christmas?

I thought long and hard about what I would like for Christmas and here’s my list:

More Personal Time

“Follow effective action with quite reflection.  From the quiet reflection will come even more effective action,” according to Peter Drucker.  I’m a firm believer that personal growth comes when we are willing to stop, pause, and allow the lesson to catch up with us.

So therefore, I’d love to have more time to:

  1. Spend a week or two w/my wife out of the country (Challenge: Who will watch our children).
  2. Take two month sabbatical to finish writing my book (Challenge: Sustaining congregational unity, worship intensity, & momentum).
  3. Study Retreat Condo – a place where I can take off after Sunday’s worship to refresh, reflect, and rest while studying, planning, & strategizing (Challenge: Finding members who will sow their place into me or band together & purchase it). LOL!

Partnering With People With a Kingdom Perspective

In addition to having more personal time, I’d also like to have more people with a Kingdom mindset & proper perspective.

So therefore, I’d love to partner with:

  1. People who are willing to try something different.  Yesterday’s innovation unfortunately has a shelf life.
  2. People who are willing to connect with and serve the poor in our community.  According to Matthew 9:36, Jesus is always on the side of the poor & oppressed.
  3. People who make worship a priority – especially during holiday seasons.  It’s amazing how some ditch worship during the holiday seasons.
  4. People who sign a covenant not to complain for entire year 😀

Appreciation

Finally, in addition to receiving more personal time and partnering with people who have a Kingdom perspective, I’d love to receive a little more APPRECIATION.  It’s been said, “ministry is a thankless job.”  Those who labor in ministry would agree with that statement.  When I speak of appreciation, it boils down to two areas:

  1. Respect.  I’m amazed at the lack of honor pastors receive.  Although there have been many public pastoral downfalls, the fact remains: “You cannot replace what God has in place.”  Period.
  2. Words of cheer, comfort, and compassion.  Just the words, “thank you” or “we appreciate you” go a long way.

 Churches, what could you offer your pastor to help with these needs and desires?

Pastors, what do you want most from your congregation this Christmas?

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