How Do You Solve All Problems in Churches?

Especially in moderately to severely conflicted churches, that’s the expectation. Members want me to fix (or replace) elders. Elders want me to fix members.

I can’t and I wouldn’t if I could. An expectation of me fixing problems is not my imagination. This has often been stated. “You need to tell the elders…” My reply, “If I fix them this time, who will fix problems when I leave?”

If a problem is chronic and someone is still upset by it, it’s because everyone likes it the way it is more than what it would take to change it.

[bctt tweet=”The identified patient (elders, preacher, certain members) are rarely the cause of problem(s), but where sickness of the group is surfacing.” username=”@JerrieWBarber”]

All Problems Aren’t Solved During an Interim Process

Because of the weakness of the interim

  • The interim may not learn root problems.
  • The interim may learn some problems but not know how to solve them.
  • The interim may learn some problems, know how to solve them, but not communicate solutions, train people, and effectively implement solutions.

Because of the weakness of the congregation

  • Many people don’t want to grow and change. Many fail to take individual responsibility for following Jesus. They want others to relieve their stress.
  • Some think the solution to all their problems is the new preacher they’re selecting. When they think that, they’re disappointed.
  • In some groups, family rules are so entrenched they’re dying to stay the way they are. And the eventual death of the congregation can be the result.
[bctt tweet=”In some groups, family rules are so entrenched they’re dying to stay the way they are. And the eventual death of the congregation can be the result.” username=”@JerrieWBarber”]

Gail and I have been pleased with our work for eleven years. People have been gracious and encouraging to us. I’ve never met an interim I didn’t like.

My goal isn’t to fix a church.

I come with a desire for them to glean a few “mustard seeds” of truth and wisdom to help each Christian individually and the church collectively.

I bring a wastebasket for them to discard things not worth taking home.

I beg for criticism. I want to do better with each congregation. Brothers have been kind, helping me to grow.

I’m encouraged by growth I’ve seen in people and congregations where we’ve worked and look forward to more opportunities.

[reminder]

(Visited 7 times, 5 visits today)
Jerrie Barber
Disciple of Jesus, husband, grandfather, preacher, barefoot runner, ventriloquist

10 Responses to “How Do You Solve All Problems in Churches?

  • W. Tom Hall
    2 years ago

    Something I have learned over the years: You can only ‘fix’ yourself.

    • Jerrie W. Barber
      2 years ago

      Tom,

      That is a key concept. You’re on target.

  • Larry Acuff
    2 years ago

    Jerry, I greatly admire you and appreciate your work. God bless you and Gail.

    • Jerrie W. Barber
      2 years ago

      Larry,

      Thank you for your encouragement.

  • I have personally benefitted from your unique approach (Just for one example, you are the only preacher I’ve heard give permission to go to sleep.)

    • Jerrie W. Barber
      2 years ago

      Eric,

      Thank you. In those rules, I’m stating that people are going to do what they want to do and I’m not going to be upset. Each person has to decide choices and actions.

  • Bob Herndon
    2 years ago

    Good thoughts Jerrie. Thank You.

  • Julia
    2 years ago

    Forget self and reach out in Love

  • I guess it was the FHU lectures of 2006 when you first told me you were thinking about Interim Ministry. I had never heard of the concept, at that time, but you have truly pioneered a viable outreach – both to congregations that know they need it, as well as those who begin the process “without a clue”.

    • Jerrie W. Barber
      2 years ago

      Eric,

      Thank you for your encouragement.

      Gail and I are enjoying it and being blessed by the people who let us work with them.

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