by Jac La Tour

Much is being written about how pastors lead and why many need to lead differently. The bold title of a recent blog by Ed Stetzer underscores the seriousness of this issue: “How Christian Consumers Ruin Pastors and Cheat the Mission of God.

Stetzer lays much responsibility in the leader’s lap: “The pastor who insists on being the focus of local ministry trains the body of Christ to sin…God cannot receive glory in the church when pastors are always up front receiving the credit and doing the things that their consumerist congregants should be doing.”

A 2009 Leadership Journal article with a less incendiary title—“Open Source Activists”— offers a relevant alternative to the top-down leadership style. Of that model, Pastor J.R. Kerr writes: “This kind of organizational environment expects leaders to know and control virtually everything in the life of the community.”

His alternative? “My generation is hungry for something more than the 15 principles for building a better team…They are a generation that isn’t content receiving a vision; they want to be part of shaping and creating the vision. My generation believes in open source influence.”

Here’s a question: How might this different kind of leadership look for those who manage a ministry’s finances? What do you think?

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