The lead pastor of one of the largest churches in America, Dave Ferguson talks candidly about lessons learned in minstry.
Dave Ferguson is lead pastor of Community Christian Church, Chicago, a 2011 Outreach 100 church (No. 78 Largest)
CONNECTION TO OUTREACH: Dave Ferguson, a frequent contributor to Outreach magazine, is one of the featured pastors in the article “The Transparent Leader” in the 2011 Outreach 100.
A Memorable Moment in Ministry
A couple years ago, we had a service where we offered to ordain any person who felt called to the ministry of a particular person or a place. We taught from 1 Peter 2:9, how every one of us is a priest, and then offered to anoint and pray for anyone who would accept that call into ministry. I had no idea what would happen. I was overwhelmed when we had more than 2,000 people come forward to be anointed and declare the people or place they felt called to reach. I will never forget that celebration service!
The Measure of Success
I measure success in people who find their way back to God. My greatest successes are through others and the churches we have helped start.
The most nervous I’ve been in front of a crowd?
When I had to sing.
I Took a Risk When …
I took a risk when we got into our first facility. We grew very quickly, and you could tell that we were becoming a “cool” church to attend. Jesus didn’t want us to be that church, and I didn’t want to lead that kind of church, so I delivered a message where I told people if they had left other churches and were not going to become 3C [Celebrate, Connect, Contribute] Christ followers, then they should go back to the churches they left. I went on to tell them that the chair they were taking up was for someone far from God who would one day soon be a 3C Christ follower and on mission with us!
I am absolutely convinced that people really want to live out their God-given dream, but most of them just need someone to say, “You can do it!”
My biggest disappointment has come when I’ve invested in high potential leaders only to see them abandon the dream that God has for them for a lesser dream. I hate that!
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