A New Vision for Transforming Pastoral Leadership
**This blog, and perhaps every blog to follow, will be exploring a new vision for pastoral leadership and congregational care. A vision I am discovering or have been “stumbling, bumbling, and fumbling” my way into the past eight years of planting and serving a congregation committed to soul-care and spiritual formation. If you find it helpful, please let me know and freely share it with others.**
I serve as the pastor of Pillar Community Church in Vero Beach, Fl.
My family and I, with a few friends, planted Pillar in 2011.
Pillar’s vision is to be and become a place of soul-care and spiritual transformation.
Spiritual transformation, as a primary means of discipleship, has been gaining ground since Richard Foster published Celebration of Discipline, just over thirty years ago. Yet we find the term early and often in both the Scriptures.
I use the term to emphasize the conviction that it is possible for everyone to be transformed into the image of Christ. This conviction is the central message of the Gospel.
Therefore, as Ruth Barton notes, spiritual formation is also the central mission of the church.
Pastoral Ministry Lessons I’ve Learned While Engaged in Pastoral Ministry
During these past eight years of ministry service and spiritual leadership, I’ve discovered some lessons I’d like to share. More than lessons, I discovered a way of doing ministry that flows from being. This doing from being is grounded in five specific spheres or areas of ministry. I have also discovered that as I remain awakened to these areas, the ministry activities in which I engage takes on a more life-giving and Christ-like characteristic and quality.
In fact, these Five Spheres have the capacity to transform ministry into an exciting environment of sustainable spiritual formation and soul-care. Soul-care that is for the good of the individual, as well as for the sake of others.
These spheres are enveloped within one another (see image below). As such, they are intricately connected to a holistic ministry that provides life-giving and soul-sustaining care, within the context of a congregational community.
I am using the term sphere as a metaphor, of sorts. I am focusing on, the range of influence, space or place of ministry, arena, area, walk of life, etc. In other words, the term spheres to comprehensively illustrate both the nature and caliber of any ministry that is focused on spiritual transformation. The hopes of such a ministry are to holistically shape the lives of those involved.
A New Way to Lead, A New Way to Be
These posts, in an ongoing way, will be simply reflections on each of these spheres.
Hopefully, my reflections will bring encouragement to ministers, pastors, elders, lay-leaders, etc., in any realm and within any context. These spheres, however, have specific application within the context of congregational leadership.
Truthfully, these discoveries related to a new way to lead, serve, and share life together, aren’t limited to the church.
The image that most fully captures the heart of these spheres is included here:
One final note: I am writing these blogs as I continue to engage in ministry. As such, I am conveying the lessons learned in a piecemeal fashion. Part of the reason I am writing the blog is to help me clarify just how formation these Spheres are and how they might be of some assistance to others.
Much more to come,
Transforming Pastoral Leadership,
I’d love to hear your thoughts!