Team Contacts
318.448.3402
1.800.622.6549 (LA only)

Bill Robertson, Director Pastoral Leadership Team
Bill.Robertson@LBC.org
ext. 291

JoLynn Chesser, Administrative Assistant
Jolynn.Chesser@LBC.org
ext. 292

Stacy Morgan, Church Administration Strategist
Stacy.Morgan@LBC.org
ext. 293

Dianne York, Administrative Assistant
Dianne.York@LBC.org
ext. 231

Eddie DeHondt, Bivocational Smaller Church Consultant - North
Eddie.DeHondt@LBC.org
318.464.1998

Gary Mitchell, Bivocational Smaller Church Consultant - South
Gary.Mitchell@LBC.org
ext. 294

Benjamin Harlan, Music Strategist
Benjamin.Harlan@LBC.org
ext 234


 

Pastoral Team


Pastor, Are Your Metaphors Well?

The quick pace of pastoral life can cause the faithful minister to miss the vital metaphors of the Scripture.1 The physical activity image is fervently employed by Paul and must not be neglected.

Athletic Affirmation

The athletic imagery and events are illustrations used in conveying the importance of spiritual wellness. The apostle Paul’s words and letters denote a vivid awareness of balancing both the spiritual and the physical, as well as making appropriate analogies from the physical to the spiritual, as seen in the following verses from the New King James Version:

But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and from the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God (Acts 20:24).

Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified (1 Corinthians 9:24-27).

And I went up by revelation, and communicated to them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to those who were of reputation, lest by any means I might run, or had run, in vain (Galatians 2:2).

You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? (Galatians 5:7)

Holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain (Philippians 2:16).

I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:14).

But reject profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness. For bodily exercises profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come (1 Timothy 4:7-8).

And also, if anyone competes in athletics, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules (2 Timothy 2:5).

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteous which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing (2 Timothy 4:7-8).

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God (Hebrews 12:1-2).

Perhaps the absence of physical activity in the pastor's life is an indicator of not fully embracing the metaphors for personal application. That is, the Scripture indicate that the Christian life is not easy and requires great discipline. A commitment to physical activity serves as a perpetual reminder of the narrow sanctifying road. If one neglects the physical, the spiritual may not be too far behind. The spiritual and the physical are interconnected and serve as beneficiaries of each other. 2

Application

Reading. Are you careful when you read or do you typically rush through the pages? Less can produce more, when intentionality is the starting point.

Running. Do you need to slow down your pace for your own spiritual growth? If you not receive the proper spiritual nutrition, you will inevitably run out of spiritual food to share.

Reflecting. Will you spend more time reflecting, rather than always focusing on directing? Meditating upon the Scripture is a necessary discipline that will produce the best of fruits.

© Jim Fisher, Ph.D.
Christian Education and Leadership Concepts, LLC.
CEandLC@gmail.com
Fit for the Fight, March 2011

1 Much of the information is taken from the author’s dissertation: The Relationship between Selected Disciplines of Physical Wellness and Spiritual Wellness among Southern Baptist Pastors, 2006.
2 Criswell, W.A. 1980. Criswell's Guidebook for Pastors. (Nashville, TN: Broadman Press), 355-356.


Fit For The Fight - Current Issue

Fit for the Fight 02-2013
Added 6/4/2013 12:02:30 PM

“Pastor, what do you think about leadership?”  February 2013

The myriad usages of  “leadership” often obscure its origination.[1] Etymology reminds us that the meaning finds its roots in the idea of  “guiding, directing, and traveling.”  Consequently, a leader takes someone along on a journey, with a clear destination.


The Leadership Example

Christians seek to be like Him...a servant.  Leading is serving and serving is leading.  The source material for the footprints and fingerprints of Jesus is found in the Bible. Inspiration and direction come from studying Scripture, praying through the revealed Truth.  While there are official titles and positions for leadership, such labels are unnecessary to lead.  Everyone has a circle of influence. 

The use of “lead” and “serve” as synonyms does not diminish the reality of difficulties, disagreements, or debates.  It does mean the presence of a pastoral spirit and an invisible shepherd’s staff.  

People-pleasers

Many “leaders” are survivalists, concerned with popularity over principle.  They “lead” by consensus prodding, when often, the courageous minority is right.  Indeed, a “prophet-deficit” has proven to be unbelievably costly.  The goal of leadership is not to have everyone’s approval, affection, and applause.

Matters of style and strengths are inherently connected to any conversation of leadership.  But, what is said about the substance of leadership?  The source of one’s leadership theology and its implementation/application must be foundationally fixed.  Without such security, the leader will vacillate when the winds of adversity blow.  Such a leader is unreliable, disrespected, and marginalized, even though revered as “successful.”

Personal integrity is humbly bound to a core of convictions, founded and grounded in the Scripture.  Such veracity will garner the respect of most, even amidst divergent views.  Belief and behavior must be congruent.  Convictions must be distinguished from preferences.  Confusing the two will sound an unclear trumpet to all.  

Application

Dictionary.  What dictionary are you using to define and defend your use of “leadership?”   The source may determine the course. 

Direction.  Are you drifting away from the Truth?  The wrong book can you lead you away from the Book.  

Discipleship.  Have you forgotten the Great Commission?  Padding your resume by more seats in padded pews is not necessarily obedience. 


© Jim Fisher, Ph.D.  
Christian Education and Leadership Concepts, LLC.   
CEandLC@gmail.com 
Fit for the Fight, February 2013 

 

 [1] Much of the information is taken from the author’s dissertation: The Relationship between Selected Disciplines of Physical Wellness and Spiritual Wellness among Southern Baptist Pastors, 2006.