This week I’m posting a series of blogs about how pastors respond when people in their church compare their leadership and preaching to others or when they brag about another church by insinuating that we don’t measure up
Yesterday I posted 5 ways we should respond when we feel compared to others more ‘successful’ than us.
Today, we’re looking at really bad ways to react when someone in your church compares you to others. I’ve listed five unhealthy reactions here.
- Find something about the other ‘guy’ to criticize, like, “We’ll, I’ve heard he’s a real jerk when he’s one-on-one with other people.”
- Tell the other person that maybe they need to start attending that church.
- With a sarcastic tone tell that person, “Thanks, I really needed that!”
- In your mind, beat yourself up about what a failure you are.
- Go home and overeat, take your anger out on your spouse and kids, or look at pornography.
How have you or your friends reacted when felt compared to those in ministry more ‘successful?’
Yesterday I began a series of blogs to unpack this issue: what should pastors do when people in our churches compare us to other more “successful” pastors.
In that blog, I shared an email a pastor received from someone in his church who boasted about another super-successful pastor and his church. He was tempted to respond with sarcasm.
I don’t recommend sarcasm.
So, how should we respond when we feel compared to others?
Here are my thoughts.
- Recognize that comparison comes with the territory. As the old adage goes, “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.”
- Ask yourself when you feel compared, “Is God trying to teach me something?”…about my confidence in where God has me…about what I can learn from this other pastors…about how I receive unpleasant messages.
- Respond with a gracious spirit to the person who compares.
- Don’t read in ill motives. Perhaps someone in your church simply wanted to share how God used another spiritual leader in his or her life.
- Thank God for blessing the other pastor.
How have you responded when someone compared you to another?
I’ve hired several pastors and admin staff in my ministry of 30 plus years and I’ve made some great choices and some not so great ones as well.
These mistakes have contributed to my poor selections.
- Not pursuing the yellow flags that nagged at the back of my mind.
- Refusing to REALLY ask other key influencers what they REALLY thought.
- Thinking I could fix the hire’s glaring deficiencies over time.
- Rushing the process.
- Letting my emotional attachment to the potential hire overshadow thoughtful reflection.
- Being too nice in the process (that doesn’t mean that I didn’t treat the potential hires with respect).
- Not praying enough.
- Not listening to my gut.
What hiring mistakes have you made?
Related post: The 360 Degree Assessment-an invaluable tool for leadership development