"God is not turned off by the relatively small number that sits on the population sign at the edge of my town."
We are so excited to share this week's conversation with you. Jon Sanders is the Founder of the Small Town Big Church Network, an incredible ministry to support and encourage leaders in small towns and rural contexts. We had the opportunity to meet Jon a few months back and have immediately hit it off with him and feel a strong connection in perspective and vision.
Along with pastoring a rural multisite church for many years in South Dakota, Jon is also a full-time firefighter / EMT. Today we have fun talking about how pastors are doing right now, pastor appreciation month, bivocational pastoring, and a little preachin' from Jon about what he's been seeing in his work with leaders. We know you'll enjoy hearing from him and we hope you're blessed by this conversation today.
Here are some key takeaways from today's conversation:
We can't view the context God has us in as a penalty box. God wants to do huge, eternal things in small and rural towns across the country. He's looking for leaders who will believe Him for it.
Your church can't be healthy if you aren't healthy. We've been saying this a lot lately, so it was a confirmation to hear it from Jon as well. The health of your soul and your leadership is so so so important.
A lot of church structures make it impossible for pastors to lead. When your livelihood is so wrapped up in keeping a board or congregation happy, pastors are put in a tough spot where they can't say what needs to be said and lead the church where it needs to go.
Subscribe (and Leave a Review!)
Be sure to subscribe to The 95 Podcast on whatever platform you prefer! You can also keep up with the latest podcasts, articles, and resources by using the form below:
The 95 Podcast is a ministry of 95Network. As a nonprofit, we rely on the support of those who believe in our mission to resource small and mid-size churches and support pastors. If you have been impacted by this podcast or our ministry, would you consider supporting us?
Dale is the Executive Director here at 95Network and the author of Stalled: Hope and Help for Pastors Who Thought They'd Be There By Now. He has been in ministry for 40 years and is dedicated to helping small and mid-size churches get healthy. Dale has served in nearly every role of church leadership (except Worship Pastor), and has had a wide variety of coaching and consulting experience. He and his wife Gina have been married almost 40 years and live in Greenville, SC.