Topical - Assistant Pastor, role of...
I. The Role of the Assisting Pastor (Exodus 18:13-27). 3
A. The Leadership of Moses (Ex.18:13-27). 4
1. Jethros Advice to Moses. 4
2. Four Characteristics of the Assisting Pastor. 4
II. Keys to Effectiveness. 5
A. Practical Ministry. 5
1. Depend on the Person of the Holy Spirit in your ministry. 5
2. Learn to Represent Your Pastor Properly (Phil.2:19-30). 5
3. Learn Your Pastors Strengths and Weaknesses. 6
4. Be alert and observant. 6
5. Giving attention to details. 6
6. Know your Pastors hotspots. 7
7. Be well organized (Prov.15:22; Luke 14:28; 10:26). 7
8. Quality Control (Malachi 1:7-8) 7
9. Take the bullet for the Pastor. 8
10. Protect his time (Eph.5:16). 8
11. Protect him from making bad decisions and mistakes. 8
12. Light Switch Issues 9
13. Must have vision (1 Samuel 3:1; Prov.29:18). 9
III. Assisting Pastor’s Service Checklist 10
IV. Seven Illustrations of Effective Spiritual Leadership. 11
A. What does Paul say 2 Timothy 2:1–26? 11
1. Reproducing, disciple-making teacher (2:1–2) 11
2. Loyal, sacrificing soldier (2:3–4) 11
3. Disciplined, committed athlete (2:5) 11
4. Faithful, enduring farmer (2:6) 11
5. Skilled, accurate craftsman (2:14–19) 11
6. Holy, usable vessel (2:21–22) 11
7. Humble, peaceable bond-servant (2:23–26) 11
B. Some People. 11
1. Which One Are You? 11
I. The Role of the Assisting Pastor (Exodus 18:13-27).
Introduction: As we go through this study, we need to keep in mind that God has called the Senior Pastor to shepherd the Church of God. At Calvary Chapel La Mirada there are several pastors on staff, however, there is only one Pastor, and his name is Pastor Bryan Parish. The rest of us are here to assist him in the ministry to which God has called him. Therefore, we are assisting pastors, and our Job is to assist the Pastor. Furthermore, none of us at Calvary Chapel La Mirada were hired because Pastor Bryan needed our expertise. We are here simply because Pastor Bryan does not have the time to do all the work.
For Pastor Armando and myself, we really have the most awesome job on the face of the earth. Why? Because Pastor Bryan is extremely generous, patient, forgiving and in tune with the Spirit of God so that following him as he follows the Lord is truly a joy. Because of Pastor Bryan’s obedience to God’s calling on his life, the Lord blesses his ministry and we in turn are blessed as well.
God has called your Senior Pastor to shepherd the flock of God. In doing this, your Senior Pastor cannot do all of the ministries alone. He does not have the time or the energy to do so, that is why the role of the Assisting Pastor is vital to his ministry. Note, I said “his” ministry not yours. Ultimately all of the ministries that take place at the church are his and you are there to assist him.
Exodus 18 will be our starting point and we will see how Jethro will give advice to Moses to select men for the ministry. In the same way, God will speak to your Senior Pastor whom He wants selected for the ministry and what He wants him to do. Your Senior Pastor will delegate ministry to you so that these tasks will get done. If you do not follow through and complete the tasks your Senior Pastor gives to you, you are hindering the work the God wants done. This will then lead to the frustration of the Senior Pastor of which he does not need. Lets look together to see how Moses heeded the voice of Jethro.
A. The Leadership of Moses (Ex.18:13-27).
1. Jethros Advice to Moses.
a) Moses could not do all of the work (v.13-18).
(1) Jethro… Moses… the leaders: All of Moses energy was being spent unwisely. Moses needed to delegate. Even in (Acts 6:2-4) the apostles insisted they needed to delegate so they would not leave the word of God and serve tables.
(a) As an Assisting Pastor, you MUST free your Senior Pastor so he can spend his energy wisely.
(b) Pastor Bryan is free up to focus on the ministries that God has put on his heart (Family, Study the Word, CCBMS, Church Planting, Raising up Pastors, Missions, etc.)
(c) It is my job to free him of non-pressing issues and to keep him freed up so he can stay focused.
(2) In order for Moses to effectively delegate, he must first stand before God for the people. In other words, he must pray for the people.
(a) You must free your Senior Pastor of all the trivial things and disputes so he can spend quantity and quality time in prayer.
(3) For Moses to effectively delegate, he must then teach them the statutes and the laws.
(a) Pastor Bryan must teach his congregation the Word of God and in order for him to do so, he MUST be free to spend as much time as he needs studying. If not, then he has nothing to give out.
(b) When the people know God’s word for themselves, many disputes will be settled immediately.
(c) Also, when the people know God’s word for themselves, they will not be discouraged when they can’t bring their issues directly to the Senior Pastor himself.
(4) Jesus Christ… Senior Pastor… Assisting Pastor: all ministry flows from the Head of the church, Jesus Christ (Eph.4:11-12).
(a) Jesus Christ has raised up the Senior Pastor for the equipping of the saints, for the work of the ministry.
(b) The writer of Proverbs says to “Be diligent to know the state of your flocks, And attend to your herds” (Prov.27:23). In order for the Senior Pastor to do this, the assisting pastor needs to be diligent, fulfilling the tasks he is suppose to do.
(c) It is awesome to see when God is working through your Senior Pastor and you have the privilege to be part of that work.
2. Four Characteristics of the Assisting Pastor.
a) Not anyone was fit for this job (v.21-27).
(1) Men of ability: able men (Ex 18:25; Deut 1:13, 15; 2Chr.19:5–10; Ps 15:1–5; Acts 6:3).
(2) Men of godliness: such as fear God (1Sam.16:7; Acts 13:22; Gen.42:18). Externals must be accompanied by right internals.
(3) Men of God’s Word: men of truth (NIV “trustworthy”). Knowledge must be accompanied by character.
(4) Men of honor: hating covetousness (Deut.16:19; 2Tim.2:22).
II. Keys to Effectiveness.
A. Practical Ministry.
1. Depend on the Person of the Holy Spirit in your ministry.
a) Not by might, not by power, but by My Spirit (Zech.4:6; Eph.5:18).
(1) Jesus said, “I will build My church…” It is His work, the problems are His problems, and the people are His people. The Lord is leading your Senior Pastor and you must be led by the Spirit as well.
(2) This means you MUST MAINTAIN a strong devotional life. The ministry will never be more spiritual than you are (Lk.10:38-42; Acts 4:13; Mk3:13:14)!
(3) Pray for your pastor every day. Without prayer, he cannot succeed.
2. Learn to Represent Your Pastor Properly (Phil.2:19-30).
a) Being like–minded as your Pastor (v.19-24).
(1) Like minded literally means “equal-souled” or “one-souled,” referring to persons who are of kindred spirit. Paul and Timothy had similar qualities:
(a) Like minded (v.20)… Sincerely cared for the flock… (v.20)
(b) Not self – seeking: seeking after your own ways… (v.21)
(c) Proven character… (v.22)
(2) Over the course of time, Timothy came to think like Paul. Over the course of time I am able to see how I have come to think like my Pastor/Teacher, Pastor Bryan. This happens through hearing him teach the Word and seeing his example in ministry:
Paul said to those in Corinth “Be imitators of me. For this reason I have sent to you Timothy, who is my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, and he will remind you of my ways which are in Christ, just as I teach everywhere in every church” (1 Cor. 4:16–17).
(3) When the pastor is away, do not fall into the trap of thinking that you are now in charge. He is still in charge. You are assisting him, and you are called to run things exactly as he would if he were there.
b) Minister to the needs of your Pastor (v.25-30).
(1) Believe it or not, your Pastor has needs (Phil.2:25)!
(a) Support your Pastor (Ex.17:9-13). Be refreshing to him (2Tim.1:16-18). If you disagree with him, never allow anyone to see or know you disagree with him.
(b) Be eyes and ears for your Pastor (v.9). Moses had Joshua choose men. How could he have done that if he was not aware.
(c) Joshua did what Moses commanded him (v.10). When your Pastor gives you something to do, DO IT. Take the pressure off of him (v.12).
(d) Joshua was known as the servant of Moses (Ex.24:13; Num.11:28; Joshua 1:1).
(e) Remember the concept that we opened up with (Ex.18:13-27)?
(2) You may be called to be an assistant pastor or a senior pastor. Whatever position you have, God is testing and blessing you by showing you how to serve by being an assistant and what to look for in an assistant.
(3) Your Pastor values your ministry (Phil.2:26-27). As the ministry grows, the Pastor really does not know everything that is going on. Therefore, he is dependent upon those whom God has raised up
3. Learn Your Pastors Strengths and Weaknesses.
a) Compliment his weaknesses.
(1) To be a good assisting pastor you need to know your senior pastor well. Part of knowing him well is knowing his strengths and weaknesses.
(2) Be observant and look for the weaknesses.
(a) After observing what they are, pray and ask the Lord to give you wisdom on how to compliment his weaknesses.
(b) Encourage and uplift the pastor; bless him; strengthen him with prayer, encouraging words and ideas.
(3) Never reveal the Senior Pastors weaknesses.
(a) Your pastor needs somebody by his side that will defend him, support him and part of that is not revealing his weaknesses to others. That is called gossip.
4. Be alert and observant.
a) Looking for what needs to be done.
(1) The senior pastor does not have time to tell you everything that needs to be done. As a matter of fact, I bet he does not know everything that needs to be done, THAT IS WHY YOU ARE THERE.
(2) Do things that need to be done without being told. There has been several times where my pastor has told me of things I have overlooked, things that were not put away, stocked, etc… I felt terrible that he should even have to tell me that let alone notice it.
(3) If there is nothing to do, then I bet you are not looking hard enough to see what needs to be done. There is always a need.
5. Giving attention to details.
a) Giving all the details…and sheltering from the details.
(1) One the one hand, he needs to be informed about everything.
(a) He can’t oversee the ministry without data. Senior pastors hate surprises in there ministries.
(b) Tell him about people in the congregation, what’s happening in the meetings he doesn’t attend, Sunday school, youth group.
(c) If you don’t see him often, write him a letter or an email of situations that need attention. Pastor Bryan has far to much going on to have me sit planted in his office
(d) God will often put ministry in my heart that my pastor has not told me to do. I will let him know of those things.
(e) Be eyes and ears for the ministry. Listen to what people are saying, attitudes they have. Look for those who serve diligently.
(2) On the other hand, there are times he wants to get straight to the point.
(a) Briefly organize and communicate in a clear, understandable way.
(b) Some pastors are detailed oriented and some are not. My pastor is not a micro-manager, he is hands off. He gives me a ministry/task to follow through on and it is my responsibility to do so and when he asks if it is done, it better be.
(c) Remember, you pastor is extremely busy and when he asks for information about something, get straight to the point. Don’t give him all of the details unless he asks for them.
6. Know your Pastors hotspots.
(1) When things don’t go right, what gets him mad?
(a) Tasks: not completing tasks that should be. Air conditioners and heaters not working, cobwebs, electrical outlets not covered, etc.
(b) Un-organized events: organizing events are very important.
(c) Money: spending the Lords money unwisely.
(d) Bad news: telling him things in-between services that would get him upset before he teaches again. If it can wait, then fine, wait until all services are over.
7. Be well organized (Prov.15:22; Luke 14:28; 10:26).
a) Areas of organization.
(1) Having answers for his questions. If he asks you, “Do you have John Do’s phone number” if not, get it, then keep it on hand for next time. Think ahead of what he may need and when he may need it and be ready.
(2) In our staff meetings, most of the time I know of ministry related things he is going to ask me, therefore, I must be ready. I will spend much preparation time before our staff meeting to make sure I am ready.
(3) Have an answer of event dates, times and locations. Be ready
(4) Deadlines, what needs to be done at certain times? Take time up front on events
8. Quality Control (Malachi 1:7-8)
a) Strive for excellence (Colossians 3:23)
(1) Get things accomplished. Realize that you are ultimately responsible for a given task (Colossians 3:23).
(2) Once you delegate a task, don’t just forget about it, follow up on it.
(a) The Lord delegated ministry to your Pastor and he delegated ministry to you. The pastor needs to be able to delegate to you and then forget it, not giving it a second thought.
(b) When you delegate a task tell the person the time frame they have to get the hob done.
(c) If they do not meet the time line, call them and find out why.
(d) If they have a lame excuse then strongly consider taking the job away from them.
(e) Or you may extend the time but only for a short period.
(f) Do not let this go on indefinitely.
b) Take care of the little things that can turn into big things.
(1) Make sure the job is done to a high standard and do not except anything less than that. Do it right the first time.
(2) Don’t fall into the trap of thinking this is just a volunteer and we should accept substandard work.
(3) If you have to do the job yourself to get it done in time or right, then do the job yourself.
(4) If things are not being done, why not? Are you or others being lazy? Do you simply not know what needs to be done? Then find out and fix it.
9. Take the bullet for the Pastor.
a) Divert the line of fire from my pastor.
(1) Remember, your pastor is human and he will make mistakes. He will also make decisions that will not please everyone, for he is not a man pleaser, therefore, many will want to “fire away” at him with criticism, gossip, etc.
(2) There is a basic principle of employment, “Make the Boss Look Good.” And there may be times this would involve “taking the bullet” for him. Your job is to divert the line of fire from him to you.
(3) There are times my pastor will tell me to go and deal with an issue or sin with a certain person, and of course, this is something they do not want to here. When I do this, I don’t say, “Pastor Bryan told me to tell you.” That is not only not taking the bullet, but you have shot the bullet at your pastor.
(4) You need to be the bad guy, sort of speak. If you pastor has to do it, what do you think that person will be thinking the next time he sits under the pastors teaching? He will probably have bad feeling toward the pastor and will not be able to receive the Word.
10. Protect his time (Eph.5:16).
a) Your pastor wants to make the most of his time.
(1) Remember, he has to study for probably 3 messages per week not counting Bible Ministry School as well as prayer. He also has to make major decisions that you may know nothing about and is none of your business. And, Oh yes, don’t forget he has a wife and kids that need his time.
(a) Guard his office time, yes he is reachable, but there are also times when he is not. That also means, you don’t bother him while he is in the office.
(b) Guard his personal time. Don’t call him at home for trivial things, learn to take the initiative and make decisions on your own. Only call him at home if it is necessary.
(2) He loves the sheep, cares for them and wants them to be the best fed sheep on the planet but there are to many of them. That is why he hired you. If there were not to many of them you would not be needed.
11. Protect him from making bad decisions and mistakes.
a) Don’t be a yes man.
(1) No pastor, nor anyone in leadership, needs someone who nods stupidly and agrees with everything you say. Your pastor needs your advice, your opinion and your viewpoint on all the issues that arise in the ministry.
(2) Here are a few guidelines to go by:
(a) Be open and give your opinion honestly and frequently. He needs to know where you stand and why. But once you’ve given your opinion, let it rest.
(b) Make sure he has all the information possible to make the right decision. Don’t withhold any information to try and get your way.
(c) Be content in letting him making the decision. If he makes a mistake, its his fault and God will deal with him.
12. Light Switch Issues
a) Things that nobody gives a second though about.
(1) Have a checklist of things that need to be done before every service, and get them done. I have put together a checklist; we will go over this later on in our time.
13. Must have vision (1 Samuel 3:1; Prov.29:18).
a) A vision that is consistent with the Pastors vision.
(1) Know your pastors heart and visions for ministry that God has given him. This will come as you (1) sit under his teaching and hear what is on his heart, (2) you are in tune with the Spirit and God puts vision in your heart, (2) he tells you.
(2) The ministries you oversee must have the vision that your pastor would have. When your pastor asks you “So, what’s your vision for this particular ministry” is it “Umm, I don’t know.”
III. Assisting Pastor’s Service Checklist
|Arrival||Before your Senior pastor|
|Approach Your Senior Pastor||Ask him if there is anything that he needs before service? If someone approaches him with a long and drawn out situation, direct it to yourself, in other words, guard his time.|
|Temperature (between 65-75 degrees)||Sanctuary, Nursery, Toddlers, House, Jr. High, High School (all rooms).|
|Children’s Ministry Teachers||Talk with Director of Children’s Ministry. Verify that all teachers and aides are present.|
|Bathrooms Check||Are all the bathrooms in good condition & clean; toilets flushing, quantities are abundant (towels-toilet paper-soap, etc.).|
|Sanctuary||Clean; Risers cleaned off (no purses, etc.); Kleenex boxes-pads of paper-pencils supplied; carpets cleaned, etc.|
|Audio and Video System||Check to see it is running properly; Light is working; Back-up Bulb is ready; etc.|
|Prayer Room/Nursing Mothers||Cleaned up; Floors vacuumed; trash can pulled out to patio area; spiders & webs checked for and cleaned; no boxes; any stuff cleaned; all dumped items to be thrown away; etc.|
|House||Everything in order; all rooms clean and presentable, cobwebs, lighting, etc.|
|Kitchen||Cleaned up; no boxes on top of cabinets and tables; tables in order; brooms straightened; no brooms out of place|
|Bookstore||Cleaned up; vacuumed; tapes prepared and done for services; etc.|
|Altar Prayer Leader (Wednesday Nights)||Verify they are there; Find-Remind-Organize|
|Youth & Children’s Ministry Round Up||Have Youth Pastor, Coordinator or an Usher to round up all the youth outside of sanctuary hanging out doing nothing.|
|Bulletins||Are Present; Are Folded; Have Inserts in them; Are Ready for Distributing them, etc.|
|Water on Pulpit||Do Last; Let Ushers do this-just make sure the 2 cups of water are filled|
|Water on Pulpit||Let ushers do this; just verify that the 2 cups on the Pulpit are filled|
|Clean Up||Have all the rooms at Church been cleaned?Are all the tables put away in proper places?Any toys left out? Crayons? Etc.Lights turned off? Doors Locked? Alarms Set?|
|Departure||Leave after Senior Pastor|
IV. Seven Illustrations of Effective Spiritual Leadership.
A. What does Paul say 2 Timothy 2:1–26?
1. Reproducing, disciple-making teacher (2:1–2)
2. Loyal, sacrificing soldier (2:3–4)
3. Disciplined, committed athlete (2:5)
4. Faithful, enduring farmer (2:6)
5. Skilled, accurate craftsman (2:14–19)
6. Holy, usable vessel (2:21–22)
7. Humble, peaceable bond-servant (2:23–26)
B. Some People.
1. Which One Are You?
a) Which category do we fall in?
(1) Some people are like wheels - they don’t work unless they are pushed.
(2) Some people are like trailers - they have to be pulled all the time.
(3) Some people are like kites - always up in the air. If you don’t keep a string on them they are likely to fly away.
(4) Some people are like canoes - they have to be paddled.
(5) Some people are like footballs - you never know which way they are going to bounce.
(6) Some people are like balloons - always puffed up and you never know when they’re going to blow up.
(7) Some people are like flat tires - they have to be jacked up.
(8) And finally some people are like good watches - open faced, always on time, dependable, faithful, quietly busy and full of good works.
(a) As you step into servant/leadership roles you must be like the good watch – open faced, always on time, dependable, faithful, and quietly busy – full of good works.
(b) Because the people you will be serving are all of the above!
(c) And the last thing the leadership needs is one more that must be pushed, pulled, paddled, puffed up, or jacked up!
(d) The reality is that as we step into a servant/leadership role our job is to wash the feet of the "wheels", "trailers", "kites", "canoes", "footballs", "balloons", and "flat tires" and help them all to become watches!