"Then looking at him, Jesus felt love for Him and said to him, 'One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.'" -Mark 10:21
Each year of ministry has come with its share of lessons learned. Currently, I am learning something with an impact for sustainable ministry into the future. Allow me to share this personal lesson in an address to other pastors and ministry leaders.
Never neglect the reality that you just might not be sent to this congregation to change them, but that perhaps God is using this congregation to change you.
Each leader has his inadequacies and weakness. Each ministry leader has her insecurities and doubts. Each pastor has his holes through which perfection leaks right out of grasp, and a congregation you engage with and truly shepherd will have an incredible knack for revealing those things.
This is not an attack, nor is it an especially intentional action of the congregation. This is the way of congregation. It is the way of koinonia. It is the way of the Holy Spirit doing his work in the life of a pastor and ministry leader called to this very place.
If you will allow, God will change you, ministry leader. He will do so with and through the people you thought you were here to fix, save, and change.