WISDOM IN THE CHURCH

Pastor Steve & his brother Dr Rodney Smith

We have divided the focus of our thoughts into those relating to the pastor and the people.

Do your growth rings show?

Religion is not magic.

The church is precious but tough.

Love the church.

Life is in seeds & fruit.

Jesus is alive; Holy Spirit is alive.

The Serenity Prayer.

Encourage, encourage, encourage.

Nurture counts.

Know & talk about yourself.

A gentle spirit is not a feeble spirit.

FOR PASTORS

Power

The Gospel is powerful. How that power works in people’s lives is endlessly fascinating and completely frustrating if you seek to control it.

Wrestling for power and control is inherent in human behaviour and political processes are alive and well in all churches and denominations.

Expect conflict.”

Individualisation

In Western society individualism reigns, it has invaded the community of believers.

Because the demands of ministry are greater than your physical capacity to meet them there will always be people who don’t get what they want and will be unhappy with you.

In Christ be yourself”

Personal Failings

Always remember what my daughter had on her door: “Be patient…I am a work in progress” I am, you are and so is everyone you deal with

Life is short, eternity is long, remember Esau and live with integrity and the higher goal when faced with temptation.

Eternity is a context”

Personal Development

Read books especially biographies (not hagiography), flesh out spiritual principles with 21st Century fact.

Relationship conflict may expose emotional vulnerabilities within your own character, eg the need to be affirmed, admired, to please at all costs. When this is not forthcoming anger, discouragement and disillusionment often occurs.

Deal with them.”

FOR PEOPLE

Expectations

At a church camp in WA church folk were asked what they expected of their pastor. As the list grew, suddenly the pastor’s wife burst into tears….

Emotions are real”

If you have left two or more churches in a disgruntled state; I am sorry, it is not them, it is you!

INVOLVEMENT

You need a purpose in being part of a congregation. People working on a Kingdom project, in a Kingdom way, that is bigger than them all, come alive.

Seek first the Kingdom”

Beware of resisting change in your church life or personal life. The church life becomes irrelevant, the ministry is lost and you become uninspired.

DISCIPLESHIP

Jesus said “By your love they will know…” what do you know about your worshiping community?

One person sows, another reaps, His gift then is humility for ourselves and gratitude for the work of others.

SO; there is seemingly an endless stream of thoughts BUT…..

Just in case you want to know:

The brothers Smith are:

Steve Smith – a Christian who has practised as a Pastor in NZ, Bangladesh and WA before coming to Footscray.

Rod Smith – a Christian who practices as a Psychiatrist and counts among his patients, people of most Christian denominations as well as people from a variety of faiths.

We are married with adult children.

People are our core ministry.

These thoughts therefore arise from 75 years of the joyous rough & tumble of ministry and reflections on human behaviour in those contexts.

Jesus said:

My joy I leave with you.”