An excerpt from Professor Ben Shin, Talbot School of Theology: Lessons of Leadership
So how do you actually “pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching”?
I would recommend four basic practices that have been helpful for my own busy life with ministry.
First, I would carve out some personal time to reflect, think, and just examine my heart. This is just a discipline of silence and solitude that will allow opportunities to reflect and examine one’s heart.
Second, I would dialogue with honest and close people in my life and ask them to evaluate me. I would then compare my perception of myself with what they say. My spouse knows me the best and can certainly give an honest assessment of how I am doing. It would be important to listen to her input!
Next, I would be in the process of journaling and recording my thoughts over a period of a year. Then, I would read over my journal logs to see if I have progressed or regressed. This would potentially tell me if I was doing well or if I’m cynical. Checking to see if the journal logs are any indication of my heart and seeing if they offer any clues to the condition of my soul.
Finally, I would spend extended times in prayer asking the Holy Spirit to expose any shortcomings or undeveloped parts of my character that needs growth. This is not an easy process to do but definitely a necessary one if a pastor or leader is to have success not only in the eyes of the church but more importantly in view of God’s high calling and standards.