12 Ways to”Shoot Yourself in the Foot” as a Pastor

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Want to “shoot yourself in the foot” as a pastor?

Here are a dozen ways:

Do life alone and trust no one

Question everyone’s motive

Don’t know key stakeholders in the church

Avoid transparency in favor of protecting image

Refuse critique or evaluation

Put family life second to the church

Take personal pride in numbers

Believe you have to do everything and never say “no”

Spend time with God only when preparing for a message.

Ignore signs of burnout

Protect “secret” sins and pretend perfection

Abuse personal health

Pastors, what would you add?

(Obviously, I’m praying you recognize the sarcasm and do the opposite of each of these. If you need help, please reach out.)

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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16 thoughts on “12 Ways to”Shoot Yourself in the Foot” as a Pastor

  1. Many would love to apply these valid points to pastors, but actually they are points for every believer to be considering! The bar for believers should be raised a lot higher.

  2. Great list. I have taken the list and made questions out of them for reflecting on my purpose:

    Purpose:
    Glorifying God
    Making disciples
    Equipping the church for the work of service

    Am I doing life alone? What does the evidence say?
    How does my behavior affect my ability to glorify God? to help me make disciples? to build up the church?

    Do I question everyone's motive? What does the evidence say?
    How does my behavior affect my ability to glorify God? to help me make disciples? to build up the church?

    Thanks for sharing the post.

  3. •Reacting to criticism with anger, shame, or humiliation
    •Taking advantage of others to reach their own goals
    •Exaggerating their own importance, achievements, and talents
    •Imagining unrealistic fantasies of success, beauty, power, intelligence, or romance
    •Requiring constant attention and positive reinforcement from others
    •Becoming jealous easily
    •Lacking empathy and disregarding the feelings of others
    •Being obsessed with oneself
    •Pursuing mainly selfish goals
    •Trouble keeping healthy relationships
    •Becoming easily hurt and rejected
    •Setting goals that are unrealistic
    •Wanting "the best" of everything
    •Appearing unemotional

  4. Have a personal vision over a corporate one.

    Desire personal sucess over the success of others.

    Pray more for own needs than those of others.
    Twitter: daredub

  5. Though I am not a pastor, I believe that most of these points are applicable to any leader. Some add-ons:

    ~ Refusing to let go of the status-quo
    ~ Following "Head-in-the-sand" philosophy fearing to face a problem
    ~ Surrounding oneself with intellectual dwarfs rather than geniuses in order to ensure supremacy
    ~ Chasing title, positions, etc rather than making a real difference