successful ministry

Going through my Google Reader and hit up Craig Groeschel’s blog. As usual he’s got some excellent content. He’s doing a series on ‘Successful Ministry’ right now, that is so basic that it’s ridiculous. But I assume they don’t teach this stuff in ‘Pastor School’. Check it out:

The size of your ministry does not determine the level of your success.

  • Too many pastors have led large ministries while tragically failing personally and morally.
  • Too many have sacrificed their families all in the name of church growth.
  • Too many have lost their personal passion for Jesus while leading His church.


Successful ministries are built on Christ by leaders who do the small things daily:

  • They return calls and emails promptly.
  • They show up on time.
  • They pray for God’s guidance.
  • They love and serve people.
  • They study hard and preach passionately.
  • They have a consistent and strong work ethic.
  • They follow through on commitments.


You are successful when you:

  • Live daily with integrity.
  • Pursue Christ with all your heart.
  • Preach your best sermon to a very small crowd.
  • Visit the sick in the hospital.
  • Cry with the parents who just lost a child.
  • Forgive the church member who wronged you.
  • Give privately to someone in need.


You and those closest to you will know:

  • The sacrifices you’ve made.
  • The pain you’ve endured.
  • The hard decisions you’ve faced.
  • The loneliness you’ve felt.
  • The fear you’ve overcome.
  • The weight you carry.


When working with pastors, many are often looking for a big win. They want to have a big community event, a big servants’ banquet, or a big series that runs attendance higher.

While all these can be effective, I encourage consistency in the small things daily.

I’ll compare it to football. Most championship teams win games on many four-yard, six-yard, and eleven-yard gains. They might win one game a season on a last second hail-Mary pass, but most games consistently succeeding at the basics.

To me, this all seems like common sense. But I’m surprised by the lack of these things I see in my own life and by some other leaders I know.

Time to re-focus.