I know in ministry it’s easy to be scared or jealous of the church down the street. Maybe they’re growing faster than your church, maybe recently some of your members have gone there. Or maybe there is no reason at all.
This is a natural inclination for most of us. We believe in the church we lead, the mission, the exact theology, and everything else about it. We want to see people meet Jesus and grow in our doors.
But we need to grow past this. We need to grow past our fear or jealously of other churches and fellowship with area pastors. No, I am not talking about fellowshipping with pastors hours away or your friends from seminary, (great things to do by the way) but pastors of churches in your town, city, or community.
So here are some concrete reasons why you need to fellowship with area pastors:
Collaboration is a major asset that can come out of getting together with area pastors. What your church can do by itself is great but just think how much the church could impact the community when individual churches team up and put all they have together and go for it. One church I was at was blessed to have a youth program collaboration in place. In the context I was in three churches came together and did youth events. This is a great example of how to collaborate well together. But this will never happen if you do not fellowship with other area pastors.
Sure you can get encouragement from pastors and colleagues around your nation and the world. But no one can give you the contextually specific encouragement. Whether it is a huge problem that your specific community is involved with or a recent tragedy that happened in the community, area pastors can better encourage and show empathy than those far removed from the situation
Makes It A Community Effort
You can make “doing church” a community effort. Passed collaborating on events and such you can do an Easter service together, or a summer service in the park. One such effort I saw was in my hometown where a bunch of churches got together and did a sermon series on what it means to be a neighbor. Efforts like this can do great work in your specific context and would not be possible without the fellowship of local pastors.
It’s What Jesus Wants
Jesus wants us to work together-not apart to reach the lost. This is stating the obvious. Fellowship with area pastors if for no other reason than to please Jesus.
It Speaks Volumes to the Community
Again, back to the community. I have seen so many contexts where the local churches were so divided that what it communicated to the community was “hey we hate each other, so come to our church because it is the only right one”. Really, this is a heartbreaking message to convey to your town. Instead when you felowship with other local pastors leading to collaboration and cpmbined efforts the message to the community is a much better one.
Let us know in the comments how you fellowship with other local pastors!