7 Hard Truths EVERY Pastor Needs to Hear Today

Pastor, these may be hard to hear, but you need these important insights.

I love pastors. I love to encourage pastors. And, that’s biblical. (Ephesians 4:29 … or something like that.)

Seriously, I’m a pastor. And, I work with pastors every day. Having not been a pastor in the business world longer than I’ve been a pastor, I’ve still got somewhat of an objective … almost outside perspective.

And, now I am a pastor. Have been one for over a decade. Sometimes I wish I could share with pastors what I’m really thinking.

Well, maybe I can.

Here are seven hard words I’d say to every pastor:

1. Your family should not be second to your ministry.

Your ministry is important. It’s your calling … hopefully, your passion.

But, so is your family. Or, at least, they should be.

In fact, I’d claim that if your family suffers, almost without exception, so will your ministry.

2. You may never feel completely in control.

I realize the ministry has so many unknowns.

You work mostly with volunteers. You can’t seem to motivate people to do what people need to be doing.

That’s not going to change. You are walking by faith, remember.

3. You need someone in your life, besides your spouse, who knows the dark places.

Your spouse will usually feel the need to cover for you … and will almost always see the best in you.

You need someone who knows you well, but can look at you and say … “You’re not telling me the whole story. What’s the real deal?”

4. Your pace often determines your longevity.

If you run too fast … you’ll burnout. If you run too slow … you’ll get bored.

And, either is dangerous.

5. You aren’t the only one who can do that.

In fact, God has designed the church as a Body … with many parts … who can do many things. Are you seriously allowing yourself to be held responsible for everything?

You’ll be far more successful in ministry if you learn to equip and release.

6. Your church can function without you.

You aren’t indispensable. You’re awesome … and wonderful … and the greatest pastor ever … maybe … but the “church” has lasted for several centuries without you.

Sorry to break that to you, but when we come to realize this as true, it is a freeing reality. Jesus is in control.

7. You’re doing better than you think you are.

Admit it. You’ve been comparing yourself to others … haven’t you? And, it’s depressing at times. How can they do the same or even less effort as you do and seem to get more results?

But, God has a plan for you. It’s unique from His plan for everyone else. Be faithful to what He has called you to do. And, don’t worry about everyone else.

And, someday … I’m convinced … you’ll indeed hear, “Well done … good and faithful servant … well done.”

Ron Edmondson is a pastor and church leader passionate about planting churches, helping established churches thrive, and assisting pastors and those in ministry think through leadership, strategy and life. Ron has over 20 years business experience, mostly as a self-employed business owner, and he's been helping church grow vocationally for over 10 years.


  1. God bless you for sharing these realities sir. Its sure to heal most. People these days are really not able to say it as it is. How do we go forward if that doesn’t happen? May the Lord grant us grace that we can walk in truth one with another. It makes the work so much easier and freer.

  2. Amen; i have known this to be true, thank you for sharing it again, as a matter fact this year all pastors in my zone area shall be holding this theme in a conference” the Pastor and the First Church, after you have gone to be with the Lord, your children will not have another Dad like you but the church will continue to be developed, the first church is ours but the second church is the LORD’s

  3. very nice piece. it’s indeed, A MUST READ FOR ALL. let’s all help spread this timely exhortation to all ministers in the vineyard. God bless the writer


  5. After reading #1 to #6 (mostly admonitions or rebukes, but all of which I totally agree with), it’s a good thing that you still ended the article the way it did in #7 (encouragement). Thanks!

  6. Thanks for this article and this amazing web! Regards from Argentina!

  7. Thanks for this.

  8. Yes!

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