No time to develop your side business?

business building time management


A common problem many pastors struggle to overcome as they think about launching a business of their own is the fact they are already overworked with little to no margin in their lives. How in the world will they ever find the time to start and operate a business while still pastoring? 

Some pastors may think, “I’m already overworked, and now you propose I start a business? How can I possibly do that when I can’t keep my head above water in the church side?”

In reality, the average pastor is too busy doing things others can do. There are legitimate reasons to hand some of that stuff off.

Choosing a New Model

A pastor must reach the place where he or she decides they are no longer going to operate in a traditional, often expected, yet unbiblical model that requires them to do the majority of the work of the ministry. The key is for that pastor to learn how to lean into the gifts God has already placed within the body to carry out the various functions of the church. 

You could do it quicker on your own – and maybe even better, at least to begin with. But if you only do it yourself, you are not developing leadership nor empowering others to do ministry.

Years ago, Jon created a course called A Pastor’s Guide to Delegation. In his own ministry, he found himself doing too much, including doing too many things other people could do. He came to a point where he was burning out, and he was brought face to face with the realization that when he tried to be “superman,” he was actually keeping other people from using their gifts.

Jon, after realizing his error, actually sat down with the leadership in his church and repented, apologizing to them for not being a better leader. And he vowed to stop trying to do the ministry himself and instead equip others to do ministry. As he did, he realized he was not alone in the struggle.

This frees a pastor up to focus on the few things he does best and has been called by God to do, while at the same time providing margin in his life for other things…including launching and running a business in the marketplace.  

Jon’s course, A Pastors Guide to Delegation, is available for half price to those who sign up for our Pastors Business Alliance.

Traditional Role vs. Biblical Model

In our traditional expected role in the West, the church pays the full-time pastor to do all of the work. However, this is not a biblical model, and it is one that hinders church members from developing their skills and gifts and limits the amount of ministry that can be done.

The simple answer to this problem is delegation. Jon learned he had to start handing things off. He helped develop staff roles, many of which were volunteer. They created written job descriptions. The result of this transition was that he took the time to slow down and start handing things off to other qualified people. He identified, recruited, and trained them. And he was on the path to start leading leaders instead of being the one doing all of the work.

If you do all the work, it leads to frustration and burnout.

Some pastors need to be needed, and they are internally driven to be the hero by meeting as many needs as possible. But that’s not healthy, nor is it a biblical model of ministry.

In Jon’s course, A Pastors Guide to Delegation, he offers ten concrete steps pastors must take.

The first step is to stop being a full-time pastor.

Stop the traditional model from the modern world, which created some not good unintentional consequences. We must start thinking differently. In the West we are often training our church members to be consumers, looking to pastors to be primary producers. That model needs to be blown up. Because at the end of the day, that model leads to unhealthy churches.

Pastors need to make the adjustments. Churches get healthy because leaders learn to work on their church and not just in their church. We must change the paradigm and model.

This also requires pastors to deal with unrealistic expectations that may not be God’s design. This is not about a pastor doing less work – but doing what they are called to do by handing off what they are not called to do.

The second step is accepting that you are not going to be the primary ministry provider.

Pastors must give themselves permission to stop running themselves ragged. Instead, they must choose to say, “I am going to be an equipper.” When you do that, you do so with the full support of God’s Word.

At the end of the day, this is a leadership issue. The overworked part is a leadership issue -a choice you have accepted conditions to be that way. You don’t have to just be a victim of your board or the system. You have the power to decide to make things different.

Ready to take action?

Purchase A Pastors Guide to Delegation in our Pastors Business Alliance and see all of the steps pastors can take to free up more time for marketplace ministry.

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