A Window Into A Pastor’s Heart

Written by gregdenham on June 4th, 2010


Due to the fact that 1,500 to 1,800 men leave the ministry every month, it’s essential to have the right understanding of what a Christian leader, Elder, Pastor is.

In short, we NEED godly and biblical perspective on what a pastor is, so that we embrace what God intended in the pastoral role and calling and benefit from it as well!

Last Wednesday we studied Paul’s message to the leaders in Ephesus which gave us a unique window into what a Christian leader is, what a pastor is.

Below I have copied the seven main points that we have covered so far in Acts 20, with more to come.

In addition, some of you have requested “the letter” I read Wednesday night, that I had written to a friend of my father who asked me about how I view my “career” and “work”. I thought I’d include that too, as it will give you a window into what makes your pastor “tick”:)


#1 Vs. 17-19; 31 A pastor is committed to the point of PAIN and thru pain

#2 Vs. 20-21 A pastor is Committed to the whole TRUTH

#3 Vs. 22-25 A pastor is Committed to the CAUSE above personal interest

#4 Vs. 26-27 A pastor is Committed to clear CONSCIENCE and to FINISH!

#5 Vs. 28 A pastor is a WATCHMAN over their own life

#6 Vs. 28 A pastor is a WATCHMAN over the stewardship of the church

#7 Vs. 27-31 A pastor is a WATCHMAN over the church and the dangers that threaten the church from the inside out.


Dear Mr. Silberman,

Over the years I have tried to avoid deriving the value of who I am and the value of my work based upon leading a larger and more affluent congregation than the one I presently pastor. In other words, I have tried not to base my own value or the value of our ministry on numbers. However, at the same time, I do believe that it is essential to cast vision and work toward the influence of as many people as possible. I believe that the sacred responsibility of each generation of Christians is to know Christ and to make Him known in their generation. Ultimately, I believe that the core of “church growth” is that “healthy sheep beget healthy sheep!” I believe it’s essential to focus on the individual and God will build his church.

While at times I have had questions with the issue of new beginnings in my life and ministry, at the same time I have worked very hard not to allow it to derail me from my present responsibilities as an overseer, a teacher, and a leader in the ageless and eternal priorities of scripture. I have tried to live the adage, “Wherever you are be fully there!” I have tried to avoid the idea that our ministry in Auburn would be a stepping stone to something else.

The core of my thinking is the idea that I am a steward which means that I oversee what is not mine and I want to be as responsible and fruitful as possible with the resources and opportunities that are before me. I have tried to live with the thinking that if the Lord wants me to “play” outfield, or be the water boy, it is His call and His pleasure. I see my responsibilities as a sacred task, the value of which, and the measure of which, is ultimately weighed by God.

I believe my life is a part of something bigger than myself and that it is essential to leave a godly legacy for the next generation that hopefully will be something that they can build upon to God’s glory.

I believe there is a difference between excellence and success. Success is more often measured by culture and is based on finances, name recognition, or a broader and more influential platform. At the core of excellence is that which is measured by God and is based on doing your best and faithfulness to God. I have tried to focus on excellence, rather than success. I hope to be able to say like the Apostle Paul who at the end of his life wrote from prison, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith!” (2 Tim 4:7)

God bless you,

Greg Denham

(October 2009)

5 Comments so far ↓

  1. Barbara Reed says:

    Excellent letter! I have grown under your teaching and preaching of the death of Jesus on the Cross and what it means. That’s why I can’t sit through certain songs at the beginning of Sunday’s service without tears falling! He did so much, for such as I. What a pitiful thing I am that He should love me and die for me! Thank you for being my Pastor!

    Love in Christ,

    P.S. One day the Lord will make a way for my husband to attend services with me. I’m anxiously awaiting that time….but His will be done, not mine.

  2. Steve Chase says:

    What encouragement and enlightenment! What a model the apostle Paul is. And keep up the “sacred task” you have been called to pastor Greg. God Bless you!

  3. Margaret Danzer says:

    Pastor Greg, I do not think I would be a Christian had I not heard you that fateful day being interviewed on the radio. That was over 14+ years ago. I praise God for you and what He places on your heart to teach us continually. I pray that we all have ears to hear, eyes to see and a heart to understand the depth of it all. Thank you with all my heart. Blessings & hugs

  4. Marsha L. Gallup says:

    Hi Pastor Greg,
    The Lord encouraged me to share this verse with you after reading it these morning in Acts 5:41-42.The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of the suffering disgrace for the Name (the Cause of Christ). Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is Christ.

    In Acts 4 :29 it says,” Now, Lord,consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness.”

    Greg, these verses express Christ’s character in you!
    Since God is for you,Greg, who in this world could possibly be against you? I ask. And if there are some-these people are totally plotting in vain. It’s not you they are against, Greg. It is Someone much bigger than themselves. Woe to them.

    May this conference for pastors be a total blessing to you.
    The Lord is surrounding me both now and forevermore as I write this.
    Marsha Gallup

  5. Shelly says:

    My goodness, I can tell you this my faithful pastor, friend, brother in Christ, you have been the most influential person in my life in regards to pointing me to Jesus Christ. You have taught me to keep my eyes on truth. The absolute importance, authority of God’s word. You have played a major role in helping me to see who I am in Christ. To know Christ and make Him known!

    “Wherever you are, be fully there!” This is clearly seen each time you are teaching, every time I have had a conversation with you.

    I have been a part of Calvary Chapel for almost 18 years and I want you to know I see commitment from you to the point of pain and thru pain. You and your precious family. THANK YOU!!
    Thank you for keeping hope in Christ alive!
    God bless you beyond measure!

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