1.1 Background of the Study
Your pastor has a family. Sometimes the congregation forgets. Sometimes even the pastor seems to forget. If the pastor is single, relatives and close friends are the family. Each member of that family--as each member of your family--has needs to be met and potentials to be developed.
Peter preached, recalling Genesis and God's promise to Abraham, “In your descendants all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Acts 3:25). So we become one family in Christ, caring for every member of the body. Sometimes a pastor's family may feel that the church members are the pastor's family, because they seem to have more impact on the pastor. Whenever they call, whatever they want, the pastor seems to be ready to counsel, teach, preach and visit. Because pastors care about what they do, it often is difficult for them to turn people away who crowd into family time. More and more pastors, however, are scheduling regular time away from their pastoral duties for their families in addition to time for themselves. There are great rewards in the pastor's home. Children have access to a parent at times other children can't reach theirs. They understand what their parent, who is a pastor, does more clearly than children whose parents "go to the office." But there may be a sense of intrusion, especially when the pastor's family lives in a parsonage.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Pastoral family lifestyle is one of the keys to success in the ministry of the church. Capable and skillful leaders will create an atmosphere of excitement, give directions to move forward, and develop people to grow into maturity. Only when pastors understand leadership in the light of God’s calling on their lives will they be equipped to lead effectively. As the Barrs state, “Leadership is the process of influencing people to give their energies, use their potential, release their determination, and go beyond their comfort zone to accomplish goals. Leadership is a dynamic process. It affects, risks, drives, inspires, threatens, supports, and leads.” Local churches are looking for someone to lead them into God’s purposes God’s way. Local churches need leaders who truly believe God will do what he says. People will follow spiritual leaders who understand God’s agenda and who know how to move them toward it. Effective leaders recognize the three elements of a triangle: (1) their own preferred and comfortable leader style, (2) the comfortable relational styles of their followers, and (3) the most productively structured ministry situations for them. Pastoral leaders should be alert to the most comfortable and productive combination of these three elements leader follower-situation. Is this leadership triangle too complex to analyze? No, leaders can select their own leader style and can help structure the ministry situations they work in. In other words, leaders can influence two of the three points of the leadership triangle. That creates favorable, reciprocal, and complementary possibilities for effective leadership. Leaders determine their followers’ style reactions, however, unless they choose to manipulate.
The lack of leadership in today’s churches, especially the smaller churches, has caused all kinds of problems which have stagnated the healthy growth of the church. In this time of unprecedented opportunity and plentiful resources, the church is actually losing influence.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
1. To better understand the impact of preachers’ family lifestyle on church growth.
2. To investigate preachers’ family lifestyle on the general well-being of a church.
3. To establish a relationship between preachers’ family lifestyle and church growth.
1.4 Research Questions
1. Does preachers’ family lifestyle have any significant impact on church growth?
2. What impact does preachers’ family lifestyle have on the general well-being of a church?
3. What is the relationship between preachers’ family life style and church growth?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
Ho: There is no significant impact of preachers’ family lifestyle on church growth.
Hi: There is significant impact of preachers’ family lifestyle on church growth.
1.6 Significance of the study
The greatest challenge facing the church is that of growth. Congregational growth is not automatic. It is affected by a complex set of factors, not all of which can be controlled by the church.
This research work seeks to study preachers’ lifestyle and church growth. Though pastors' salaries have improved, they remain well below most professionals, often making it necessary for the spouse to work outside the home.
1.7 Scope/Limitations of the study
This study is on preachers’ family lifestyle and church growth with a view to analyzing the impact of preachers’ family lifestyle on church growth.
Limitations of study
1. Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
2. Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
1.8 Definition of terms
Lifestyle: A set of attitudes, habits, or possessions associated with a particular person or group.
Church Growth: is a movement within evangelical Christianity which aims to develop methods to grow churches based on business marketing strategies.
Preacher: A preacher usually identifies a person who delivers sermons or homilies on religious topics to an assembly of people
Family: A basic social unit consisting of parents and their children, considered as a group, whether dwelling together or not.
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