Rob Parsons on “The Good, the bad and the ugly” of church leadership


I’m just back from a church leaders’ lunch in Birmingham hosted by Rob Parsons.  The theme was “The Good, the bad and the ugly” of church leadership and Parsons touched on avoiding burnout, time management, dealing with critics and the dangers of church meltdown and adultery.  The session was refreshing, entertaining and as Rob Parsons suggested it didn’t teach me anything new but turned on a few lights.  Here’s my scribbled Palm Pilot notes (yes, I still use a Palm Pilot):

The Good, the bad and the ugly

Rob Parsons
2 Cor 4
In the 9/11 attacks a fireman found a guy still working at his computer. He said “you need to evacuate” but the man said “back off” and went back to what he was doing. The fireman said a second time “you need to leave the building” but the man blanked him. He was so engrossed in his world of work that he failed to have perspective on what he was really doing.

How do we step back and get perspective in ministry?
Burnout/stress
1. Explosion of anger over trivial matters.
2. Strain under heavy load, everything feels too heavy.

1. Kick the leaves for 15min a day. Take a break.
2. Pace the race.
When you know stress is coming spend a season doing less and say ”no” to commitments around that time.
3. Ignore time management mantra ”make the best use of time.”
4. Type A competitive people, numbers people, constantly analytical. Learn to switch off.

Dealing with critics
There are two kinds of critics
1. Those who are on your side
faithful are the wounds of a friend
2. Those who are not on your side
they want to tear down, let it go

The Ugly
meltdown at church
Temporary insanity leading to an affair
Walk closely with Christ

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