Pastoral Self-Care Paper for Minister and Family

Appendix B
Write a 5-page Sabbath paper outlining a clear understanding of the minister’s gifts and personality profile, along with a plan to provide emotional, physical, and spiritual care for herself and one’s family now and in the future:
Paul reminded us in Romans 12:3, “For through the grace given to me I say to every man among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted each a measure of faith” (NASB).
Utilizing Mels Carbonell’s Uniquely You profile, Please see Page 2 -14 listed below along with information learned from lectures and texts, the will
write a minimum 5-page paper outlining
and spiritual giftedness, along with a plan outlining how the student will determine ways to take care of her physical, emotional, and spiritual wellness now and in the future.
One of the aspects which needs to be included is how the student will set good boundaries by learning to say “no” to good things in ministry and life in order to say “yes” to the best that God has designed for relationships and ministry.
One additional piece to be included is how the student will give priority attention to the care of her family while at the same time dealing with so many expectations being placed on each member of the family.

SG Report
Spiritual Gifts
The Bible confirms that you were “wonderfully” made (Psalms 139:14). God’s plan and purpose was to create a person that is Uniquely You. He gifted you to glorify Him with specific influences – naturally and supernaturally. As a Christian, you have a Godgiven personality and spiritual gifts that motivate you.
Discovering how God created you can be exciting and enlightening. Knowing and exercising your motivation is vital to spiritual victory. The following information is designed to help you understand why you do what you do. Hopefully, this will result in personal growth, avoiding as well as resolving conflicts, and fulfilling ministry.
You should constantly examine yourself to sharpen your focus on God’s will and on serving Him. You can also learn why you feel, think and act the way you do. Self assessment and discovery should always lead to obedience and a deeper walk with the Lord.
The path of every search must pass beyond yourself toward knowing God better (Philippians 3:10). This instrument is simply provided to help you understand your motivation, while maturing you into an effective servant of Christ.
Be patient and determined to get all you can from this booklet. Since most people are more concerned about their personalized insights, we will begin with a general review of your personality type” .. after this Spiritual gift insight will get listed that is the users Primary Spiritual Gift and Behavioural Blends.
These are the spiritual gifts that are specific to you. Read through the report to see other personalized information. At the bottom of each page is a link to pages with general information.This is a summary of the spiritual gifts and Behavioral Blends that are specific to you. Read through the report to see additional details and explanations of your results.

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Primary Spiritual Gifts
• Discernment (40/40)
• Knowledge (38/40)
• Pastor / Shepherding (38/40)
• Teaching (38/40)
• Wisdom (38/40)
Good Fit Opportunities
• Counseling
• Deacons / Deaconesses
• Discipleship
• Elders
• Search Committee
Note: The ministries listed on your report are broad scope relating to how you responded on your ministry questionnaire or because of your personality and / or spiritual gift’s types. Focus on the 2 or 3 ministries that appeal to you and pray God will give you wisdom as to how you can serve Him through those ministries.

Your Primary Spiritual Gifts Descriptions
Spiritual Gifts are supernatural motivations given to every believer. Everyone doesn’t receive the same gift. Just as many parts of the human body work together as one, so Spiritual Gifts are given to the Body of Christ to serve as one.
Their purpose is to encourage and mature Christians for more effective ministry. These gifts are featured based upon their functional and practical use.
The Gift of Discernment is evident in those who have unusual ability to see through a lot of confusion and pin point problems and solutions. They are concerned about right and wrong. They tend to listen well and hear the little and seemingly insignificant things that shed light on a specific need. Those with the Gift of Discernment are often more serious. They distinquish between good and evil, truth and error. They like to ask questions and then give advise. They often relate problems to the violation of biblical principles. They feel strongly about obeying truth and living by the Word of God.
In a word: Listeners / Perceiver
Overuse: Too critical or too quick to share
Goal: Get more information before responding
Scripture: 1 Cor. 12:7,10b; 1 Cor. 2:14
The Gift of Knowledge is a supernatural revelation of certain facts in the mind of God, which gives instant and specific information that one would have no other way of knowing, except from God. This is not an amplification of human knowledge, nor is it a gift of just knowing a lot of things. It is the ability to receive specific truth from the Word of God. Sometimes they may overwhelm others and bring more attention to their Word of Knowledge, rather than the purpose of sharing what God has revealed to them.
In a word: Divine Insights
Overuse: Make others feel inferior or ignorant
Goal: Change lives, rather than impress others
Scripture: 1 Cor. 12:7-8; 8:1b-2
Pastor / Shepherding
The Gift of Pastor / Shepherding is obvious in those who really enjoy leading others in serving the Lord. Unlike the Gift of Ministry / Serving /Helps, this gift involves the motivation to lead. Pastor / Shepherds are compelled to encourage others to work together for the body’s sake. Influencing others to work together is important. Stressing a need for team participation, they emphasize harmony. Untrained lay-people can also have the Gift of Pastor / Shepherding. They see their service as one of maturing others. With a motivation to unite the ministry, they feel strong about spiritual health.
In a word: Discipler / Leader
Overuse: Takes Advantage of Others’ Trust
Goal: Strong leadership, not manipulating the flock
Scripture: Eph. 4:11; 1 Pet. 5:2-4
Christians with the Gift of Teaching prefer explaining why things are true. While the prophet declares truth, the teacher explains the reasons why it is true. Interested in research, those with the Gift of Teaching like to dig into seemingly insignificant details. They enjoy presenting what they discover. Often negligent of the needs of others, they press toward a deeper understanding. They love to study. Searching patiently and persistently, they may miss the obvious. They stretch the limits of learning, setting high standards of education.
In a word: In-depth
Overuse: Digs too deep
Goal: Reveal truth, don’t exhaust it
Scripture: Rom. 12:6,7b; Col. 3:16; Jam. 3:1; 2; 2 Tim. 2:2
The Gift of Wisdom is the unique ability to use knowledge in a practical way. Those with this gift like to combine what they know with a serious reverence of God in order to influence others. They sometimes battle with pride and an attitude of superiority. They need to be consistently humble and exhibit a sense of quietness and slowness before responding. Those with the Gift of Wisdom are often given some kind of adversity to stay in tune with God and His Word. Otherwise, those with this gift will tend to be puffed up. They make great counselors and give tremendous advice. Therefore, they need to stay in constant prayer, asking God for His wisdom.
In a word: Perceptive
Overuse: Speak down to people
Goal: Consistently trust and ask God for wisdom
Scripture: 1 Cor. 12:7-8; Jam. 3:13-18
The graph of your Spiritual Gifts
Name: Annie Taylor-Curtis
36 Administration / Ruling
18 Apostleship / Pioneering
40 Discernment
32 Evangelism
33 Encouraging / Exhorting
35 Faith
37 Giving
23 Hospitality
38 Knowledge
36 Leadership
29 Mercy
35 Prophecy / Perceiving
38 Pastor / Shepherding
26 Serving / Ministry / Helps
38 Teaching
38 Wisdom
SG Insights
Involvements / Spiritual Gifts
One of the best ways to grow as a Christian is to get involved. Identifying your natural and spiritual motivation will help. Many believers desire personal growth, but seldom find a rewarding ministry.
Abilities: Special insight concerning good and evil.
Opportunities: Counseling, Prayer, Personnel.
Warning: Guard against quick judgements.
Reward: Protecting others from poor decisions.
Prayer: Dear God, Give me a meek and quiet spirit, so that I can share your truth in love and not with pride.
Abilities: Special ability to remember many things, especially from the Bible.
Opportunities: Counseling, Book Store, Library.
Warning: Don’t get puffed up with much knowledge.
Reward: Helping others learn things they never knew.
Prayer: Dear God, You are the all-knowing One. May I only know and share what you want me to. Also help me not to be proud of my knowledge.
Pastor / Shepherding
Abilities: Abilities: Ministering to groups needing leadership.
Opportunities: Committee Chairperson, Visitation.
Warning: Don’t get discouraged with those who don’t follow.
Reward: Seeing the ministry improve.
Prayer: Dear God, Help me be patient with those who are apathetic or spiritually weak.
Abilities: Clarify truth / Insights as to why facts are true.
Opportunities: Teaching, Training, Library.
Warning: Don’t neglect other responsibilities.
Reward: Knowing people learn the truth.
Prayer: Dear God, Help me to be practical, not just impart truth.
Abilities: Special insights to make wise decisions.
Opportunities: Prayer, Counseling, Finances.
Warning: Don’t become proud of your wisdom.
Reward: Helping others make good decisions.
Prayer: Dear God, May my wisdom always come from you and not my own judgement. Help me to always rely on your Word and not my opinions.

Fitly Joined Together
The following are just short lists of potential ministries. Your past and present experiences should also enter into your search for a good fit. Consider your spiritual gifts, personality type, interests, passions and experiences in making your choices. Add to the lists any ministries you think would also fit that gift. Once you have chosen 3 – 5 opportunities for ministry, be sure to notify your pastor, a spiritual leader, or ministry coordinator. Then get involved as soon as possible.
The following are opportunities for ministry in relationship to your Spiritual Gifts. With your gifts in mind, look at all the ministries available. You should also consider many other gifts not included. You may also have various passions and interests that would cause you to fit well in a specific ministry not listed.If you are already involved in a ministry that doesn’t seem to match, don’t think you shouldn’t be involved. Remember Moses!

Top Spiritual Gift’s Conflicts
Gift of Discernment
Under Pressure: Becomes too serious, haughty, high-minded, critical, contemplative, judgmental, moody, analytical.
Sources of Irritation: Shallowness, inaccuracies, disorganization; lack of preparation, validation, plan, direction, authority, control, depth.
Needs to: Relax, build relationships, ask more questions, allow for discussion, spend more time being practical, be more friendly, funny, upbeat, enthusiastic.
Gift of Knowledge
Under Pressure: Becomes too serious, haughty, high-minded, critical, contemplative, judgmental, moody, analytical.
Sources of Irritation: Shallowness, inaccuracies, disorganization; lack of preparation, validation, plan, direction, authority, control, depth.
Needs to: Relax, build relationships, ask more questions, allow for discussion, spend more time being practical, be more friendly, funny, upbeat, enthusiastic.
Gift of Pastor / Shepherding
Under Pressure: Becomes serious, insensitive, overly concerned, nosey, intense, regimented, overbearing.
Sources of Irritation: Spiritual weakness, indecisiveness, immaturity; lack of discipline, plan, vision, direction, power, control, consistency.
Needs to: Serve by example, build relationships, relax, think before reacting, control self, be patient, loving, kind, considerate, tolerant.
Gift of Teaching
Under Pressure: Becomes too serious, haughty, high-minded, critical, contemplative, judgmental, moody, analytical.
Sources of Irritation: Shallowness, inaccuracies, disorganization; lack of preparation, validation, plan, direction, authority, control, depth.
Needs to: Relax, build relationships, ask more questions, allow for discussion, spend more time being practical, be more friendly, funny, upbeat, enthusiastic.
Gift of Wisdom
Under Pressure: Becomes picky, judgmental, sensitive, intense, manipulative, vulnerable.
Sources of Irritation: Waste, stinginess, insensitivity; Lack of discipline, willpower, direction, determination, Lack of stewardship, control, challenge, concern.
Needs to: Be more flexible, patient, risky, understanding, forgiving, not taken advantage of.

Combining Personalities with Spiritual Gifts
Discovering your personality and Spiritual Gifts should result in maturity and involvement in the Body of Christ. Grow for it!
The unique feature of these combinations is to understand how your specific personality type relates to your spiritual gifts. There are dichotomies – unique blends and combinations. No one has a bad composite blend. Many combinations are more common than others, but there is no wrong or abnormal combination.
There are uncommon blends (but not abnormal blends); such as, the Gift of Showing Mercy and a “D” type personality. Most people with Showing Mercy have “S” personalities. But God sometimes gives certain people this unique combination. It’s a “strange bedfellow” or “oxymoron”, like “gentle strength” or a “velvet covered brick.” The two don’t seem to mix or mesh, but God makes no mistakes and does what He pleases to gift you for His glory.
A Christian with a “D” type personality and the Gift of Showing Mercy is the kind that will bite your head off and then apologize or ask for your forgiveness. An “S” type personality and the Gift of Prophecy is also like the person who will bite your head off and then cry about it. The Prophet Jeremiah is a good example of this dichotomy combination.
It doesn’t matter what your composite blends of spiritual gifts and personality are. What really matters is, are you aware of how your different motivations affect you and do you allow the Holy Spirit to control the different influences that motivate you? Don’t let your natural and supernatural motivations control you. Let God control your motivations!

C Type Personalities With Gift of Discernment
Compliant and calculating types with unusual intuition often have “C” the Gift of Discernment. They tend to be picky and often too right for most people to appreciate. But they make the greatest resource when it comes to making practical decisions. This combination is best at choosing the right direction, but needs to be more sensitive to how their discernment might affect others. With more inspiring and optimistic attitudes, this combination is so powerful and respected.
C Type Personalities With Gift of Knowledge
Christians who tend to be very careful and compliant, but exhibit tremendous Bible knowledge and are informative about various other subjects, often have “C” type personalties with the Gift of Knowledge. They love to research and understand why things are so. They love to use their knowledge of the Bible to explain things. They tend to be a little too deep for most people, but are a great resource. They often need to lighten up and learn how to be more people oriented.
C Type Personalities With Gift of Pastor / Shepherding
Conscientious type Christians with the Gift of Pastor/Shepherd are methodical. They like to go by the book. They don’t like to take risks and venture away from what they know works. They may need to be more open to innovation. They strive for correctness. Purity in the group is important to “C” Pastor/Shepherds. Enthusiasm will encourage more to minister. Often conservative, they tend to be picky. Detailed assignments for everyone can often be overdone. “C” Pastor/Shepherds are competent church leaders.
C Type Personalities With Gift of Teaching
Compliant type Christians with the Gift of Teaching are controlled by the quest for truth. They make great researchers. Determined to discover in depth truth, they can over do their lessons. They can become too factual. People seem to find “C” Teachers competent, but boring. They can lack enthusiasm and warmth. They should focus more on practical application. As critical thinkers, “C” Teachers can sound sarcastic. When sensitive, excited and patient, “C” Teachers make great instructors.
C Type Personalities With Gift of Wisdom
Cautious and slow decision makers who also have great judgement, are often “C” the Gift of Wisdom. They tend to be extremely analytical and sensitive to right and wrong. They are not very outgoing or expressive. They prefer to research and dig into the Bible in order to discover in depth truth. They share their wealth of wisdom in detail with those who ask. They don’t tend to volunteer their wisdom and often come across as uncaring. They should increase their enthusiasm and interest in people. They often have a lot of wisdom, but little personality.

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The word “pastor” usually refers to an ordained leader of a Christian congregation. The word itself is derived from the Latin word “pastor” which means “shepherd.” The term “pastor” is also related to the role of elder within the New Testament.
Present-day usage of the word is rooted in the Bible. It is mentioned 173 times and describes the feeding of sheep, as in Genesis 29:7, or the spiritual feeding of human beings, as in Jeremiah 3:15, “Then I will give you shepherds after My own heart, who will feed you on knowledge and understanding” (NASB).
While ministers have the responsibility of serving the congregation as an “undershepherd,” there can be only one shepherd of the congregation—and that is what most of us use to describe the senior pastor.
What I will be attempting to get you to understand in this course is that we have relegated the role of shepherding to only the paid, bivocational, part-time or volunteer staff—yet with the emphasis on the staff and its role. However, the Bible calls for us all to share in this ministry, even though roles are defined differently. I find that if the pastor and staff are paid and trained, then the congregation will let them (or us) do all or most of the work. That is not what God had in mind especially when we study the fourth chapter of Ephesians.
Therefore, this semester we will look at shepherding from three perspectives: Shepherds (or pastor/staff member) developing healthy boundaries by caring for themselves and their families; Shepherds (or pastor/staff members) caring for the sheep—who are the members of the church and for those without Christ; and the sheep (members of the church) learning to share in the role of shepherding or caring for each other, with or without pastors and staff members being available. This is not a new concept, but it is not practiced in most New Testament churches in America. In fact, Glenn Wagner indicated that “North America is the only continent in the world where the church is not growing” (1999, p. 10). This has to change, and I will describe ways for you to make a difference in the future.
We must become what Antoin Boisen described years ago as “living human documents” (Gerkin, 1997, p. 15). In other words, your story of how the Gospel affected you connecting with the story of other folks who either have heard and have responded to the story of Christ or need to do so. It seems to me that “shepherding” is how the Bible describes that notion.
Wagner describes it this way:
If we go back to the very beginning, back to the Lord’s bedrock idea for His people, back to the Bible’s fundamental plan for the church, what do we find? We find shepherds and sheep. In essence, what all the polls tell us about men and women longing for relationships, searching for family, and seeking community, is that people need still waters. They need some green pastures. They need their souls restored. What they really need are shepherds who care about them! They don’t want to become lamb chops. And although they don’t mind producing wool, they don’t want to be fleeced. (1999, p. 29)
We will focus on a practical theological model. Practical theology began several years ago to take its proper place alongside historical theology and systematic theology among the modes of theological inquiry. Pastoral theology has asserted its right to speak. Gerkin tells us, “Pastoral care for the next century will disclose a way of engaging issues of practical theology which, while they give theological grounding for the caring ministry of the pastor, likewise have application to the broadest range of pastoral and communal practices in the life of the church and world” (1997, p. 19).
Finally, I hope that you will discover Dallas Baptist University’s commitment to training servant leaders as well as learn how to be “servant followers” of Christ, who loved us and gave Himself for us at Calvary and the empty tomb. What a privilege we have. Glad to have you along for the experience this semester.

Lecture 5
I trust you will become very familiar with Gerkin’s stories in chapter 4 of his text. As a young seminary graduate, I determined that the psychotherapeutic model was for me. I had majored in pastoral care in college at Howard Payne University, and in my seminary training at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. I was fairly certain I wanted to become a hospital chaplain. My last seminary hours before graduation occurred at Harris Hospital in Fort Worth where I took the first quarter of Clinical Pastoral Education training. Dr. Bob Davis was our chaplain supervisor. I worked June through July, Monday through Friday from 8:00 am until 5:00 pm. It was some of the most difficult, yet exciting, ministry I had ever experienced up to that time.
There were so many lessons I learned about myself and how the Lord worked in my life. Each day all of the student chaplains met with Dr. Davis. We discussed our patients, but mainly discussed how we were responding to our learning experiences. It was my practicum and involved all of the seminary theoretical and theological training I had experienced at that point. It literally changed my life.
I agree with Gerkin, and believe the psychotherapeutic model continues to have great value today for pastoral care. How we walk with the sheep in our ministry pastures will often involve counseling, hospital visitation, dealing with families experiencing grief and death, and supporting members of our flock who are experiencing brokenness and hurt. Drug abuse and violence toward children, spouses, and the elderly demand the best support from all of us who lead in some form of ministry. Yet, our culture has changed, and we must be able to adapt our ministry approach at the same time. There has been a paradigm shift in pastoral care. Let me remind us of Gerkin need for us to look more seriously at our stories and the significance of the narrative shift taking place.
1. Changes in the Variety and Level of Human Suffering Within Our Society – Gerkin describes this as “the loss or fragmentation of a consensual structure of meaning and value that can give order and purpose to people’s lives” (p. 101). That is a fairly long and complicated description, yet simply implies the loss of those meanings that people of a given culture take for granted as true, right, or good. Gerkin goes on to say, “When a society loses that consensual set of meanings, it is in danger of becoming fragmented, unsure of itself, and less able to cope with the diversity and pluralism inherent in a world that is becoming more and more a ‘global village'” (p. 101). Looking at the way our society deals with increasing violence of all kinds fits into this fragmentation. I shudder to think of the times I have heard news analysts tell us how mothers and fathers have either taken each other’s lives or have destroyed the lives of their own children. These were just unthinkable actions a few decades ago.
These problems have both individual and social dimensions. They are beyond what one pastor or church can control. These crises offer danger and opportunity. Help is needed.
2. Changes in the Nature of Problems Confronting Christian Congregations – We need to realize that the process of urbanization in Western society has had a tremendous influence on how pastoral ministry is done. A few decades back, most Americans lived in rural areas or small towns. Now, the majority of Americans live in metropolitan communities. Close relationships occur no longer with neighbors, but with fellow workers or professionals who live quite a distance away. Church members often do not live close to each other. Memberships of urban churches likewise tend to be socially and economically diverse so that an authentic sense of community is difficult to attain. Pastoral care within the psychotherapeutic (counseling and problem-solving) models fails to give adequate attention to the place of ritual and liturgical practices. According to Gerkin, “One of the fundamental structures of care that life in a community of faith can offer is a story or a grammar—a way of speaking about people’s circumstances—that can connect people’s life experiences with the ultimate context of meaning contained in the Christian gospel” (p. 103). Pastors now minister to people primarily in crisis. Those not in crisis often feel they “need to take care of themselves” (p. 104). Clearly, a more communal model of pastoral care is needed.
3. Changes Taking Place Within Theology that Affect Pastoral Care Practice – When we studied Gerkin’s history of pastoral care, we discovered that pastoral practices occurring at a particular time most often were a direct outgrowth of emphases in theology that characterized the time. Gerkin reminds us, “Sacramentalism in pastoral practice during the Middle Ages was a direct outgrowth of the theology of the church that dominated that period” (p. 105). At the same time, the Reformation theology of Martin Luther and others, turned pastoral practices in new directions away from sacramentalism. Gerkin indicates that the present epoch in theology may be called a time of transition, controversy, and search for new approaches to theological work. He indicates that “No one school of theology can be said to be dominant in either Roman Catholic or mainline Protestant circles”(p. 105). It appears to me that church leaders in America are trying desperately to find their identities of ministry in relationship to those in need of helping, loving hands from modern-day shepherds.
Gerkin outlines for us George Lindbeck’s cultural-linguistic (narrative) model (The Nature of Doctrine: Religion and Theology in a Postliberal Age, Philadelphia: Westminister Press, 1984, p. 32) in a creative, meaningful way that can address the struggles and transition mentioned above. He indicates, “The cultural-linguistic model of doing theology is the most fundamental model by which a community can care for individuals and families. It has the unique ability to provide people with a storied context of ultimate meaning for their lives. To the degree that this storied context maintains its connection with all the varied stories of individual, family, and community life in the world, it can provide a meaning-filled nesting place and thus the most elementary context of care” (p. 110).
There are three important elements Gerkin describes on pages 112 and 113:
1. Locating pastoral care in the center of the dialogue between the Christian story and life stories suggests that its most fundamental caring purpose is to facilitate the process of connecting life stories to the Christian story and vice versa. Let me illustrate. It is my privilege to teach two sections of Spiritual Formation for undergraduates at DBU during the fall and spring semesters. I ask my students to write their spiritual autobiographies in about eight to ten pages. When appropriate, they are free to share their stories with other class members. Recently, one young lady stood and recounted her experience with Christ. Near the end of her time of sharing she became very quiet. In fact, we had hoped she was not becoming ill. Then, she looked up and then told us she had an abortion three years previously. She became very quiet. All of us in the class were simply amazed at her freedom to share so openly with us. She told us then that she had never shared this part of her life with any other person. Yet, she indicated, “I have so wanted to unload this part of my baggage with someone. I hope all of you will still love me when I finish.” Needless to say, everyone gathered around her, and I asked one of the students to pray for our friend. I shall never forget her story and the impact it had on me and others during that class day.
2. The schema is intended to indicate that the dialogue between life stories and the Christian story involves a tension. The images and meanings attached to stories have been given a particular cast by the life experiences of individuals, families, and other groups involved. The fit between the particularity of life stories and the Christian story is never exact. There will be tension between the two. The modern-day shepherd will need to facilitate a serious, open dialogue which includes sharing of feelings, stories of past experiences, mutual questioning, and search for authentic connections. Tension will exist, and the pastoral care leader will be right in the middle of that struggle.
3. Pastoral care involves both the care of the Christian community and the care of persons. Gerkin tells us, “This will be done individually, in families and in larger group relationships” (p. 113). The care of life stories will be of extreme value to the growth and development of the church of the future. We must recognize this new approach of story and narrative. I sense that people in the churches are desperate for the ability to feel safe with who they are and how their story sizes up with the gospel story of hope coming in the person of Christ our Lord.
As we looked at the different epochs of church history and pastoral care, we have seen that healing, guiding, sustaining, and reconciling each played a part in the caring of the hearts of the church members. Each emphasis of a given era was seen as Gerkin describes, “an outgrowth of what was going on in the church and the society at the time” (p. 114). It appears that guidance will remain a strong influence. However, guidance needs to be altered in ways that take into account the broad cultural and societal problems mentioned in this session. There needs to be continued dialogue between the Christian community, its story, and people’s life stories.
Gerkin is exactly correct when he says, “The role of pastoral leadership must more clearly and intentionally than in the recent past develop a quality of interpretive guidance, meaning not simply interpretation of the Christian tradition and its implications for communal, moral, individual, and societal life. I mean also the role of interpreting the conflicts and pressure, the contradictions and pitfalls, the lures and tendencies toward fragmentation of contemporary life. In short, I mean the role of interpretive guidance as it relates to facilitating the dialogical process between stories and the Christian story of how life is to be lived” (p. 114).

Lecture 4
Recently, a wonderful student in one of my Spiritual Formation classes came in tears asking for help. I did not know what she was going through. We sat down in the Patriot Café of the Mahler Center on DBU campus and talked about her hurt and fears. She was hurt because she had such a love for women who had been victimized in our society. Yet, she was afraid because she was not quite sure if she had the gifts to provide the kind of spiritual and emotional direction these women needed. On top of everything else, she was worn out and honestly drained in every possible way. She could not find any willing helpers for the harvest God had placed in her lap.
That young leader and I worked through the steps and resources she might add to her arsenal of care. Yet, I came away from that discussion wondering why I have so few leaders in churches struggling with that kind of heart. She did not yet need any practical “how-to” techniques or skill training. She needed to firmly develop her theology of shepherding and care. I would much rather have her broken-hearted and seeking help as a shepherd than for her to become a professional, slick deliverer of “quickie” answers to deeply troubled persons in our broken world.
Maybe it would be best to go back, as Wagner does, and recover what is sadly missing in many of our theological settings today—a sound pastoral care theology. Seward Hiltner said, “The pastoral ministry has no unifying theory by which it organizes itself. The ministry is no longer based on a theology” (p. 15, Preface to Pastoral Theology, Nashville: Abingdon, 1958). Wagner then asks us, “What is pastoral theology based on?” (p. 57). That is such a great question for this session. What is your caring based on? Wagner feels that “we have abandoned God’s idea of the ministry in order to pursue our own vision of how ministry ought to be done” (p. 57).
As much as I like providing students with practical ideas for ministry, like Wagner, I have wondered if we have substituted practical ministry for pastoral theology. We must have the “nuts and bolts” as some would claim. But I have the feeling that the practical has supplanted the sense and urgency of the calling to care.
Wagner draws our attention to shepherding in this discussion by defining “poimenics.” On page 60, he indicates the term is a Greek word for “shepherd” which comes from a verb form meaning to “feed or to tend the flock.” Wagner notes, “Today, we don’t write about ‘shepherding’ or ‘shepherdology.’ Now the focus is on secular management and leadership theory” (p. 60).
David Fisher indicates: “Practical theology has replaced pastoral theology. Practical theology is ‘how-to’ pastoral training. Pastoral care has become more and more therapeutic. Shepherding, the ancient art of the cure of souls, has become more and more pastoral counseling—reducing care to human skill” (David Fisher, The 21st Century Pastor, Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1996, p. 9).
Wagner, on pages 62-64, reveals consequences of shifting from pastoral theology to practical theology:
• Loss of Enthusiasm Leading to Pastoral Burnout – I will address this topic and how to prevent burnout from taking place in the sessions that follow. However, I plead with you to take this seriously. Time and time again, I have had to help take out figurative “body bags” of ministers throughout Texas because they never learned how to deal with the important and not just the urgent matters of ministry. I can even sit with you one of these days and recount the number of ministers who have lost their marriages, or who actually took their lives, because of the inability to set proper boundaries. The reality is most of us can serve and find great joy in serving others—even live to retirement years, but I must admonish you to be very wise. Wagner is correct, “A person (minister) with only a sackful of skills in hand is much more likely to bolt and run from a difficult ministry than is the person who grips tightly the promises and instruction of Almighty God” (p. 63).
• Disappointment Caused by a Misunderstanding of the Pastorate – Generally, the problem here relates to whether or not someone truly feels a call to ministry from God, or a call to ministry from a parent or well-meaning church leader. Wagner even indicates that taking personality and giftedness profiles can lead someone to think that being a pastor or church leader is the thing to do. Without a genuine call from God, most ministers I know seldom survive past the first five years of apprentice service. I would never wish anyone to fail. I would never try to predict a minister’s demise. However, without a clear call from God (see Wagner, chapter 8), most “uncalled” ministers fade and leave the ministry very, very disillusioned.
• Loss of Central Focus on God – This is where “practical theology” versus “pastoral theology” can give unwise counsel. John Piper’s book, The Supremacy of God in Preaching, really hits home. Wagner indicates that book “liberated me” in developing a sound theology (p. 64). Piper never ridicules ministers who learn how to make hospital visits, nursing home visits, or how to mark the births of new babies. Those are wonderful times of joy for a minister and those who are served. However, these acts of kindness can never take the place of developing a theology of preaching that centers on corporate and personal worship. Neither can they replace a strong discipleship ministry. Today more than ever, the sheep need to hear and see the heart of God through the life of a true shepherd. Remember John 21 is where Simon Peter learned that “doing sheep feeding” was not nearly as important as being a follower of Jesus and an example of a God-led life.
• Loss of a Working Ecclesiology – One way this is revealed is through looking at the church-growth movement. I have enjoyed that movement and specifically the effects of planting new congregations through the Baptist General Convention of Texas. It thrilled my heart several years ago, while serving as a member of that staff, to hear the wonderful stories of new churches popping up all over Texas, particularly the cowboy church movement. As these churches continued to be born, I noticed a troubling sign. Many of those churches died out soon after their birth—generally within a two-year period. What was going on? Although there are many factors, I believe that Wagner has identified part of the problem—a poor or non-existent working concept of how church works. Fisher said it well when he wrote, “There does not seem to be a lot of biblical and theological reflection about the local church” (Ibid, p. 853). Therefore, we must go back to the leadership issue in this working ecclesiology—one that is solidly based on a shepherd or pastoral theology.
Finally, Dr. Gerkin gives us a heads-up regarding the future of pastoral care from a strong theological, yet practical perspective. We will discuss the new model in our next session—the model called “Interpretive Guide.” I believe it is without a doubt the wave of the present and future for shepherding in our culture. However, let me remind you of a few pieces of the pastoral care past that we need to carry with us into this 21st Century. Many of these will come from Gerkin, chapter two. A few of these will be from my perspective.
• Pastor as Priest, Prophet, and Wise Counselor – Gerkin tells us the following:
The function of wise guidance has been predominant for pastoral care practice. Recovery of the role of priestly care through the ritual practices of the church (examples would include serving the Lord’s Supper and baptism) as well as the education function the priests played for the people of Israel needs now to be undertaken with care and imagination. Likewise, prophetic imagination takes on greater importance when dealing with human suffering. (p 80)
I think Wagner is correct. We are going to need to find a new balance between these three roles.
• The Pastor as Shepherd of the Flock – These first four sessions deal with this concept—one that has been largely lost in this “quick fix” skill-oriented society. John 10:4 says it all, “When he puts forth all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice” (NASB). Clearly, Jesus is talking about shepherds who lead the sheep in and outside the church. The best pastors/staff leaders I have seen in action through the years have been the ones whom the people knew and loved. Those pastors knew the names of the member’s family, or the names of the storekeeper’s family and friends. Those people knew the pastor’s name. Those pastors eventually became the pastors/shepherds of entire communities. Go anywhere in Amarillo, Texas, today and ask the community leaders if they can recall the name of Dr. Winfred Moore, and I assure you, even though he has been gone for years, he is still known and loved by an entire city.
• The Pastor as Mediator and Reconciler – While serving as the Director of the Minister/Church Relations office for the Baptist General Convention of Texas, I provided training for more than 300 mediators. These persons were ministers and staff members in local churches. However, there were many laypersons who wanted to serve as “peacekeepers.” Our Lord discusses them in the Sermon on the Mount—verse 9. You see, laypersons want to be trained to serve as shepherds as well—an idea we will discuss in the last few sessions of this course. I have found that peacemaking is not necessarily the absence of conflict, but in the midst of conflict there needs to be hope and help provided by the church led by Jesus and His shepherds.
• Pastor as Worship Leader – Thank God men and women are being trained to lead churches in the most important dimension of leadership—understanding how to worship our Lord personally and privately. Your generation has discovered this as a new phenomenon in the last part of the 20th century. My generation used to sing about Jesus. Examples might be: “It Pays to Serve Jesus,” and “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.” Your generation sings to Jesus. One of the reasons that churches are conflicted over worship wars is because shepherds have not had a clear understanding of how to lead during this time of generational transition. The issue is not traditional worship, versus contemporary worship. The answer is not even blended worship in my opinion. The issue is having a clear theology of worship. If you want a clear understanding of this topic read A. W. Tozer’s book entitled, The Purpose of Man.
• Pastoral Care and the Moral Life of the People – There is such a desperate need for help in this area from modern-day shepherds. Our people need to know how to live, not under the law which Jesus came to “fulfill” as Jesus described in Matthew 5:17, but under His grace and love. One of the illustrations I have for this is in the life of contemporary college students. Often times I have found, while serving as collegiate minister or now as an adjunct professor, that the church is not speaking to the biblical view of human sexuality. These poor young adults live under such bondage because they are left alone by parents and church leaders to address the issue of intimacy that God intended for us in the story of creation. In biblical times, parents, or even matchmakers, would arrange for marriages. However, in our society, young men and women seem to not even know how to simply start conversations with the “complementary sex.” When did we buy into the idea of being opposite—different, yes, but not someone who will oppose the other in relationships. Shepherds need to step up and address this problem. The Internet, along with Hollywood, provides no help for these young leaders. The responsibility belongs to the church and parents. So, do something about it.
• Pastoral Care and the Holy Spirit – We simply must discover for ourselves and teach others how to discern the Spirit at work in our individual and corporate lives. Courses in spiritual formation are recent developments in colleges and seminaries. When I was attending college and seminary in the 1960s, the only word we heard about this concept came from the Navigators organization or those who wrote in the field of apologetics. Thank God we have finally given attention and direction to spiritual hunger and fulfillment by walking in His Spirit in all we do and believe. One book I recommend to you is Richard Foster’s, Celebration of Discipline. In addition, Dr. Bobby Moore has written a guide entitled, Your Personal Devotional Guide: A Life-Changing Experience. Dr. Henry Blackaby’s, Experiencing God, will change your life. Don’t be afraid to step out in faith and understand the person of the Holy Spirit. You will be set free to walk in that same Spirit—one of love and grace, and full of the presence of Jesus Christ.
Our next session will address the new mode of shepherding. I trust you will be thrilled as I am over its meaning, direction, and passion.

Charles Edward Jefferson asserted that the early church both heard and recognized its Master’s emphasis on shepherding. He said, “That is why the figure of a shepherd can be found on thousands of early Christian tombs, on chalices used for the Lord’s Supper, in church and chapels, on lamps, on rings, and on countless sarcophagi. In fact, “the shepherd ‘was the first favorite symbol of Christian life and faith'” (Charles Jefferson, The Minister as Shepherd, Thomas Crowell Publishing, New York, 1998, p. 17).
What happens when God’s leaders fail to take seriously the shepherd’s role? Let’s look at a couple of Old Testament examples.
Jeremiah prophesied during the reigns of five of Judah’s kings from 626 B. C to around 586 B. C. He saw Nebuchadnezzar attack Jerusalem in 605 B. C. and carry off Daniel and some of Judah’s best young minds. Then in 597 B. C. he saw Ezekiel and another group taken to Babylon. Harris writes in his Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament (Chicago: Moody Press, 1980, p. 853), “From the very ancient antiquity, rulers were described as demonstrating their legitimacy to rule by their ability to ‘pasture’ their people. Hammurabi and many other rulers of ancient western Asia are called ‘shepherd’ or described as ‘pasturing’ their subjects.” Wagner asserts, “When the prophets speak of Judah’s shepherds, they are referring to its offices and leaders, whether spiritual or governmental” (p. 38).
In Jeremiah 12:10-11 the prophet writes, “Many shepherds have ruined My vineyard, They have trampled down My field; They have made My pleasant field a desolate wilderness. It has been made a desolation, Desolate, it mourns before Me; The whole land has been made desolate; Because no man lays it to heart (or noone cares)” (NASB). Gerkin just comes out and says it best— “They did not care” (p. 43). Judah died because its kings and leaders stopped caring for the people.
Ezekiel 34:8 says, “As I live,” declares the Lord God, “surely because My flock has become a prey, My flock has even become food for all the beasts of the field for lack of a shepherd, and My shepherds did not search for My flock, but rather, the shepherds fed themselves and did not feed My flock” (NASB). Ezekiel mirrors his older friend Jeremiah’s complaints about the kings and other leaders. See the graph below to see what the shepherds had done wrong and what they left undone.
What They Did What They Left Undone
• Took care only of themselves
• Ate curds
• Clothed themselves with wool
• Slaughtered the choice sheep
• Ruled the sheep harshly and brutally • Did not strengthen the weak
• Did not heal the sick
• Did not bind up the injured
• Did not search for the lost

When shepherds commit these offenses, Wagner reminds us what happens:
• The sheep are scattered.
• The sheep become food for wild animals.
• The sheep wander on every high hill (Wagner, p. 46).
These results are not far from what happens in our contemporary setting: people splinter into cliques; sheep today become prey for cultic groups; and God’s sheep today tend to leave behind sound doctrine and a relationship with a personal God in search of the latest fad.
Even Jude 12 says, “New Testament churches have been infiltrated by ‘shepherds’ who were blemishes at your love feasts, eating with you without the slightest qualm—shepherds who feed only themselves” (NASB). He goes on in verse 13 to say, “They are wild waves of the sea, foaming up their shame; wandering stars, for which blackest darkness has been reserved forever” (NASB).
While I believe modern pastors need to manage well (I Corinthians 14:40), “do things decently and in order” (NASB), and they need to be vision casters, nothing can come close to taking the place of shepherding God’s children for the sake of the Kingdom and God’s precious will for His sheep.
As you recall, Wagner goes on to say that even the focus that DBU has on servant leaders must be carefully applied. Wagner says, “The problem of ancient shepherds wasn’t so much that they failed to serve, as that they failed to care. One can serve without caring as seen in I Corinthians 13: 3, “And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing” (NASB, p. 49). Wagner goes on to say, “It isn’t service that guards leaders against ineffectiveness and abuse of power, but love; not technique, but concern; not keen insight, but genuine caring” (p. 49).
This kind of behavior became so evident to me about thirteen years ago when I had been asked to assist a church in the DFW metroplex with a staff problem. I met with the leaders of that church for almost two months. The issue was over the pastor’s leadership, and on one Sunday night, the pastor forced the church to take a vote over whether he should stay or leave. He was supposed to stay away from the meeting. About two hours into the meeting, someone moved for the church to take a few minutes break. As moderator, I thought that to be a good idea. What a mistake! When I called the meeting to order in fifteen minutes, the pastor and his wife came arrogantly strolling down the aisle of the church. About 350 persons on the left side of the church stood, clapped and cheered. The other side of the auditorium is where another 350 stood and jeered and booed. I shall never forget the shocked expressions on the faces of children and young people on the front two rows. Well, the vote was taken, and the preacher won by eight votes out of about 700 that night. The church split that evening, and the pastor and his wife left the church in two weeks. It was all about winning, or feeding his own ego—leaving the sheep in a mess. There was very, very little love in the heart of that pastor as I recall.
Yes, the sheep can be hard-headed, and in my opinion, very stubborn. Yet, they are still sheep and need the love of the Savior through the life and example of caring shepherds.
My prayer for you and your family as well as for your staff leaders in the future is that you and they demonstrate what caring shepherds look like and how they are to act. Don’t take the convenient road to limited success by placing numbers above lives, happiness above joy, or short-term corporate gains above long-term Kingdom victories.

Lecture 2
1. broken up by the invasion of “hordes of rude peoples who swept over the territory we know as Europe” (Clebsch and Jaekle, p. 21). It became the task of the church to provide some semblance of cultural unification, which went in two directions: toward the establishment of the “elite class” and toward the indoctrination of ordinary folk in Christian descriptions of life and prescriptions for their troubles in living. Augustine along with Gregory the Great, the founder of the Benedictine order, played key roles during this time.
Two connections between modern pastoral practice and the pastoral care that developed in the early Middle Ages should be noted. One way of thinking about human spiritual needs and disciplines developed that focused on analogies between the care of the soul and the care of the body. Ideas such as “spiritual health” and “spiritual sickness” began to develop. Two, during the Middle Ages, healing of spiritual problems such as “guilt” and “despondence through anointing with ritual oils and ointments” was widely practiced. The one group that was never adequately addressed was the poor.
2. Sacramentalism of the Middle Ages — Sacramental healing became the norm for pastoral practice. Indulgences of various types were introduced. Francis of Assisi, the founder of the Franciscan order, lived a life of humble service to the poor and dispossessed. Two relevant questions arose regarding pastoral care. First, “how divine grace and forgiveness are to be received and appropriated by the people” (Gerkin, p. 41). The other was how the Christian community should care for the poor, mentioned in the previous period, and the downtrodden. These areas are still being questioned today.
3. The Era of the Reformation — It appears that reconciliation and guidance are the modes for this period of history. Through the powerful leadership of Martin Luther and other Reformers, some factions of the church made a “sharp turn away from the primacy of sacramentalism and priestly exercise of penitential discipline, and toward the care of souls in their individual search for salvation” (Gerkin, p. 41). Through the application of such doctrines as those of the priesthood of all believers and salvation by faith alone, care of the people by the newly reformed churches became more highly individualized than ever before. One of the concerns during this time involved who would give direction regarding church discipline. Moving from the pastor as the one initiating and directing discipline to the congregation-at-large became a standard practice. Small groups began to handle the dispensing of discipline, which is a pattern for today especially when sexual misconduct is involved.
4. The Enlightenment — Basic trust in human rationality, enthusiasm for the possibilities of human learning, and confidence in empirical methods of discerning truth became central ways of thinking regarding pastoral theology. Richard Baxter, an English Presbyterian pastor, led the movement of change from the Reformation in his book, The Reformed Pastor, published in 1656. He focused on sustaining people through the difficulties and pitfalls of earthly life in the quest for salvation. He spent many hours each week with families in his parish. In addition, he combined the ancient priestly, prophetic, and wisdom roles of the pastor by addressing the danger of immorality and its influence.
5. The Age of Volunteerism — After the Reformation and the period known as the Enlightenment, an atmosphere was created, conducive to voluntary participation in church life. Help was needed for this transition to take place. Therefore, guidance became the primary mode of pastoral care. Gerkin describes it best by saying, “The resurgence of interest in the life of the congregation as a community of people who care for one another and for their community likewise has roots in the altered situation of the churches that came with the separation of human affairs into public and private spheres. With those changes, the authority of the clergy had to change, and the mutual care of Christians took on a different look. As a result, pastoral care becomes viewed from a larger perspective. It involves the care of the entire community of faith” (p. 51).
More and more through the 20th and now into the 21st centuries, there has developed a sense of the church and pastoral care losing its way from the Biblical model of shepherding the sheep. Wagner identifies the problem in our text, The Church, Inc. He indicates that “during the past few decades we in the church have been busy creating, not communities, but corporations—and there’s a vast difference” (p. 25). Consider a few contrasts between what is most important in these two distinct models:
Corporation Community
• Programs
• Product
• Tasks
• Money
• Systems
• Management
• Competition
• Numbers
• Organization • People
• Purpose
• Relationships
• Ministry
• Salvation
• Mentoring
• Compassion
• Nourishment
• Organism
We just must find a better way to make the church a living, breathing organism of Christ’s love instead of one based on a contemporary model.

The TEXT resources is as follows:
1) An Introduction to Pastoral Care Chapter 1 thru 5
Author: Charles V. Gerkin
Publisher: Abingdon Press
ISBN: 0-687-01674-6

2) Escape from the Church, Incorporated Pages 1 – 75
Author: Glenn E. Wagner
Publisher: Zondervan Publishing
ISBN: 0 310 24317-3

3) Rest in the Storm: Self-Care for Clergy and Other Caregivers Pages 1 – 84
Author: Kirk Bryon Jones
Publisher: Judson Press
ISBN: 0 81701 393 8

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