Can we just take a moment to catch our breath? Follow after me, breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out.
Do you feel better now?
These last few months have been trying to say the least. If you’re still hanging in there, even if it’s just by a thread, give yourself a pat on the back.
It hasn’t been easy, and unfortunately, some pastors chose to walk away from ministry and some churches didn’t make it.
So, if you’re still standing, God’s not done with you yet.
I stopped writing for the most part when this all began because of three reasons.
- I didn’t know what advice to give.
- I was drowning trying to figure out what I should be doing.
- My kids were out of school and it’s almost impossible for me to write when they’re at home.
Thankfully, I’m no longer drowning, my kids (fingers crossed) look to be going back to school, and I’m starting to see a way forward I think.
This means you should be hearing from me more often than you have been.
By the way, if you’re a small-town pastor and you haven’t subscribed to my email list, what are you doing with your life? Click here to get signed up.
Now, from what I can tell most of us have been able to go back to at least some form of in-person gathering. And what we’re seeing is that even though we’re ready to be back in church, a significant portion of our communities are not.
This creates quite the dilemma because it can be very tempting to just go back to what you’ve always done and maybe throw in some Facebook Live on the side.
The danger in that is you can easily lose the connection you’ve built with those who are watching from home.
So, what should you do?
Realizing that you have a limited amount of time available to you, especially if you are married with kids and want to stay that way, you have to prioritize what’s most important.
This means, you probably need to stop doing some of the things you were doing before that weren’t very fruitful.
What’s most important right now?
I’ll give you my opinion.
Finding ways to stay connected with those who aren’t comfortable coming back to church yet.
You can do this by staying active on social media every week, sending them messages or emails, and by picking up the phone and calling them.
Finding ways to reengage with those who have come back to church, but may have taken a few steps back when it comes to their spiritual growth.
You can do this by preaching messages that inspire them to grow, by inviting them to connect in a small group, and by encouraging them to put their faith in action through serving.
You may have a different opinion of what’s most important right now, and that’s perfectly fine. Just whatever it is, make sure you’re making it a priority, even if that means you have to let some things go for right now.
We are in a very pivotal time period in our churches right now.
The decisions you and I make will set the course for what our churches look like 6-12 months down the road.
I know you don’t need any more pressure on you, but the choices we make will either set our churches up for success or for failure.