An excerpt from recent Barna Research on the decline of job satisfaction among Pastors asked respondents what they wish they had been better prepared for in seminary. As I reflected on the data, I realized two things. First, some of the items mentioned were not concerns when I went to seminary, such as technology or the complexity of problems surfaced through pastoral counseling. Second, it appears that there may be a disconnect between pastors who are feeling inadequately trained and experiencing failed expectations of what pastoral ministry actually is.
I’m not convinced that seminaries were totally insensitive to the realities of the local church. How could they be? Most of the stressors pastors face today were existent in the mail written to the New Testament churches by pastors such as Paul, John, Peter, James, and Jude.
Churches are not perfect places because they are filled with imperfect, broken people. That’s not going to change. Our capacity to handle such difficulties does not increase by offering better curricula or suggesting better books and podcasts. Our capacity will only increase by the measure of God’s grace at work in our own lives and our willingness to shift our posture from face to face and come alongside them. You can read the article HERE. What do you think about the survey?