You may have heard about Mark Galli’s article last week, “Why We Need More ‘Chaplains’ and Fewer Leaders.” “So who told us that the pastor is primarily a leader/entrepreneur/change agent and anything but a curer of souls?” Galli asks. “And why do we believe them?”
I found Earl Marshall’s response very helpful:
Each church will need to decide what kind of person it needs in the position of lead pastor at any given time in its existence. But the issue is never do we need leaders or chaplains. Of course we need leaders and chaplains. If you are a lead pastor and you are gifted as a chaplain your challenge is going to be allowing those who are best wired to lead the opportunity to lead. If you are a leader as a pastor your challenge will be in making sure that effective care is taking place within your church.
The problem in both will come down to expectations. In most churches the unspoken expectation is that the person talking at the front of the room will be all things for all people and will be able to provide all forms of necessary leadership for the life of the church. This is utter foolishness but it is the unspoken expectation…The problem, however, does not just rest with the unspoken expectations of others. Most pastors that I know wrestle with personal expectations of wanting to be all things for all people. This too is utter foolishness.