Walk Through Difficult Challenges

Aug 2017 – Vital Care & Counsel

Vital Care & Counsel exists to help SED churches and pastors:

  • Make strategic changes
  • Navigate key decisions
  • Identify & evaluate potential opportunities
  • Assist in critical situations
  • Walk through difficult challenges

This month we want to look specifically at our fifth and final area which is to , Walk Through Difficult Challenges. At first glance you may ask “How is this different than the last topic of Assisting in Critical Situations?” And that is a great question.  We last looked at critical situations and most were somewhat external in nature. The challenges noted here are a bit more internal in nature and even a little home grown. Let’s look at a few.

  • Relational dynamics

How many relationships does the average person have and is expected to maintain?…parents, spouse, children, in-laws, boss, coworkers, etc. In addition to those, pastors have several others…congregant, Church Council member, Elder, District Supervisor, etc.  Each and every relationship provides both benefits and expectations, as well as, unique complexities.  And for those complexities, every leader needs someone they can call to help them navigate the most challenging ones.

Navigating the complexities of relationships is one of the key arts of leadership. It can be very helpful to engage an outside objective perspective who has great discernment or great emotional intelligence to talk through possible courses of action. This is especially true when the relational dynamics carry multiple roles. (i.e. the congregant is also a family member)  Don’t hesitate to seek outside perspective. That additional clarity can help you more confidently navigate a challenging situation or know when to recuse yourself in certain situations.

  • Difficult leaders

Every leader has had to face situations involving a difficult persons. They may be hot headed, manipulative, unwilling to listen, often tardy or absent, consistently negative, etc. This can be even more of a challenge if we find that one of our leaders is that way. From time to time this type of person makes it through even a good vetting process. What makes it problematic is they now have a title and a position of influence over others.  Here is another great opportunity to request an outside perspective from other leaders to help you lead and remedy this situation with greater confidence.

  • Financial reporting

Most of our Foursquare pastors would say that financial reporting is not in their gift mix.  And that is OK. No pastor needs to feel inadequate at a lack of financial reporting prowess. The SED has multiple layers of other pastors, staff, & advisors who can help every church. There are more ways to help our SED churches than ever before.

Why? Because financial reporting is very important at the local and district levels. That information provides insight that helps pastors, churches, and their district to be effective and efficient.

  1. It enables appropriate conversations and accountability at the local church level.
  2. It helps our districts and denomination celebrate results, as well as, determine trending needs among the whole.
  3. Allows the districts to be more responsive when needs arise.
  4. Allows the district staff to be evaluated correctly as well.
  • Location changes

There are many reasons why a church would consider a location change:

  • The building can no longer house the congregation due to growth, an expired lease, damage, or destruction, etc.
  • Their community dynamics or demographics have so drastically changed in the past several years that ministry is no longer effective.
  • The congregation is unable to appropriately maintain the current structure.

And there are others.

When any SED pastor or congregation begins to consider a location change the SED office has two layers of guidance and assistance to walk alongside and work with them and their church council.

  1. Strategic guidance – this is consultative in nature to help local leaders think through a missional move…why, where, how, when, etc.
  2. Real estate guidance – this is conventional in nature to help local leaders with most of the actual legwork and the actual steps to listing, pricing, showing, negotiating, closing, purchasing, leasing, relocating, etc.

Vital Care & Counsel is ready to assist SED pastors & churches as they navigate decisions in these areas and others. For additional info contact Paul Glenn directly pglenn@foursquare.org or his cell 704.239.0569.

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