Serve in weakness. Ministers are NOT self-sufficient. They have cracks they must not hide. They need other people.
In other words, ministers suffering from “The Superman Syndrome” need to rip off the “S” and be authentic. Here’s his advice:
Some churches today have adopted a professional mind-set entirely. Like the consumer culture they live in, far too many pay the pastors to do the work of the ministry for them, while they sit back, passively watch, and offer comments now and then. Where is that in the Bible?
A pastor who allows this approach to occur has fallen for what I call “The Superman Syndrome.” I’m not talking about pulling on a pair of blue tights and a red cape and putting a fancy “S” on his chest—though I heard of a pastor who did exactly that on Easter Sunday (I wish I were kidding). I’m talking about an attitude that says: “I am self-sufficient,” “I need no one else,” or “I will not show weakness or admit any inadequacy.” These words betray the presence of the Superman Syndrome—that particular peril for pastors who go it alone and become “the star of the show.” Any pastor sets himself up for letting people down when he poses as Superman.
Read the full post on Chuck Swindoll’s blog “The Pastor’s Soul, Role, and Home”
Rockbridge Seminary students who have completed the fully online course “The Theology and Practice of Ministry” may want to reflect on Swindoll’s comments in light of one of your course textbooks, Greg Ogden’s Unfinished Business: Returning the Ministry to the People of God.
It’s tempting to [seek influence] for all the wrong reasons.
Word 1: Ego. We’ve brought the celebrity culture into our church and overlook people who are so like Jesus. We attribute more to up-front people than we should, more to attractive people than we should. The solution is to live more deeply into our brokenness.
Word 2: Burden. We place on ourselves a burden in leadership—our numbers, the highs and lows of leadership—it’s about power, control, and outcomes, and Jesus didn’t talk fondly about any of those things. Free leaders—free of the need for certain outcomes—are the best leaders.
Hat tip to Kevin Miller, Off the Agenda: Conversations for Building Church Leaders