Now, The post here comes from a conversation I had with a pastor friend of mine a few weeks back. From that conversation I jotted down some blog ideas, this is the 5th and last of those.
If you want to catch up…
the links to the posts are…
A Basic Truth Concerning Pastors
So if you haven’t read those… read those first then add that to what is said below.
It is dangerous, make no mistake, for a Pastor not to be accountable to anyone but God.
It’s not that “God isn’t enough” but God has taught us in His word to be accountable to other christians for our actions. This is one of the methods He has in place to help us stay in line with Him.
The question then is: who exactly is the Pastor accountable to?
On a very general level the Pastor is accountable to the church. He is to lead, shepherd, teach, preach and pray for them. He keeps watch over them and does the best he can to guide them in the way they should go. If he is always on vacation, never does any work or participates in a sin that brings harm to the testimony of the Church, (and Christ) the Church is to hold him accountable for that. 1 Timothy 5:19-20
However this does not mean that the Pastor should give an account to the church of where he spends his money, what he eats, the movies he goes to see, the books he chooses to read, where he should go on vacation, how he should part his hair, if he mows his grass, what car he drives, when he comes and goes… etc..
You get the picture…
God did not call Him to be a Pastor so He could be the Church’s hired hand. He called him to Pastor them.
Accountability is not slave-ability.
On a more specific level he should make himself accountable to several different groups of people.
1. His wife – Where as he does not tell her about every problem or about every counseling situation in the church. Her knowing where he is and what he is doing is just a good idea.
2. A pastor friend or two. A place where he can openly share his struggles and what he is thinking. If done correctly this can prevent him from doing something really stupid.
3. A group of people in the church that the church trusts and the pastor trusts as well. This is for accountability for his work schedule, time off and other things. It is not a group that micro manages him but one he can go to and say ” hey, this is what I am doing today, (or this week)”, especially if it’s out of the norm.
This does several things;
First – if something comes up from the church body about the pastor’s work schedule this group can handle those issues. Accountability here only protects him.
Second – it is accountability for his time. If he is working to much… which is more of a problem than many realize. This group can say… you really need to take a few days off and get some rest. If used correctly it can keep a Pastor off the road to burn out.
So there you go…
Remember, accountability is not a policing term.
It’s a tool put in placed by God to keep us on the road He wants us to travel on.
A Pastor who is in it for the long hall knows personal accountability is a part of that journey…
just like it should be for everyone else in the church