9Marks has an article written by Ron Pracht, who has served one church for 45 years, 25 years of those as pastor.
In the article Pracht lists the benefits and negatives of a long-term pastorate.
Here are a few of the ‘benefit’ points that resonated with my experience:
- Trust grows stronger every year you stay.
- You learn to be open and confessional, personally and in your preaching, because you have failed, sought forgiveness, and displayed to the people you pastor what it means to intentionally follow Jesus.
- You learn the importance of relationships and keeping them right before God. You have fought through difficulties and walked with people in success and failure—both yours and theirs.
- You earn the right to lead significant change because of the relational investments you have made.
- There is a depth of relationship with people with whom you have shared joys and sorrows, disappointments and successes.
Read the rest here.