May 5th, 1985

That’s the day, 34 years ago, that I was ordained.  What would I tell my younger self about ministry if I could time travel back to that day?

  • Most Church people are kind, helpful, and willing to serve
  • Some Church people are hurtful, selfish, and willing only to be served
  • It will take at least 2 years knowing each sort before you figure out which sort they are
  • Ministry is a thankless task; expect very little appreciation
  • Lower your expectations of people, you’ll be less stressed out
  • In every Church there is at least one thorn in the flesh sent by God to remind you that you depend on Him and not people
  • If you have 5 true friends, count yourself blessed
  • Church people will turn on you in a second.  Disagreements among friends usually end up in reconciliation.  Disagreements with some Church members will only be resolved when they have driven you off
  • Reveal your feelings about others to no one
  • Expect Church people to let you down
  • Pray without ceasing
  • In everything give thanks
  • Find something you enjoy doing outside of ministry, completely disconnected from the life of the Church, and do it every day
  • Don’t forget your family
  • Find a true friend
  • Other Pastors won’t be that true friend
  • Never trust any Church member who says, the moment they meet you, ‘I’ll always be there for you’. They’re lying.  They will be the first to stab you in the back
  • Make sure your zipper is up before you enter the pulpit
  • Never go into the home of a woman when she is there alone, and never ever meet with a woman without the door open and someone in the next room.  Ever.  For any reason
  • Don’t rely on Church workers working
  • Don’t post things before you proofread them
  • Retire and don’t supply, fill in, or otherwise preach.  No other professional keeps on doing what they’ve done for a lifetime when they retire.  Why should you

If I could time travel, these are the things I would tell my younger self.

4 thoughts on “May 5th, 1985

  1. Lisbeth Fried 22 Apr 2019 at 9:01 am

    Would you still go into the ministry if you had it to do over again?

    Sent from my iPhone



    • Jim 22 Apr 2019 at 9:19 am

      probably. maybe not


  2. Milton Almeida - The Grace Ambassador 22 Apr 2019 at 11:10 am

    Without throwing an overwhelming amount of confetti on you, I think this post should be included in the textbook of ministry’s schools (if we still have any, especially in an environment where ministry is inherited, back-door accessed, bought in or promoted due to the candidate’s success experience in an unrelated field, like being a good “used car salesman”.)
    I paid close attention to the one before last: Don’t post things before you profrid them… 🙂


    • Jim 22 Apr 2019 at 11:13 am

      also filed under ‘things they don’t teach in seminary but should’

      Liked by 1 person

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