Something More: Islam

Leadership //

It was a perfect weekend in the world of a Children’s Pastor.  The lesson was awesome, all the volunteers showed up for every service and we had a record number of kids.  After service one of my key leaders pulled me aside to talk in private.

I thought she was going to tell me a great story about how she had made a connection that day with a child that was previously detached or that a parent had pulled her aside to share about their childs spiritual growth, but it was far from that.  It was the conversation that for me, changed everything in the way I lead.

She pulled me aside to tell me that for almost a year she had been struggling in her faith.  She had questions and needed answers.  She met a person who provided her with answers but they weren’t answers that pointed her towards God.

She was pulling me aside to tell me that she was leaving the church and converting to Islam.

After that day all I could think about was how I could have missed something so critical in one of my key leaders lives.  Surely there were warning signs.  I must not have been looking.  This was the first time that I had the thought that there must be something more to ministry than just great services, sermons and growing numbers.  There is no way I could let this happen again under my watch.

If you are a pastor or thinking about being a pastor I want to tell you there is so much more to what you do every day than simply growing the church.

  • It is more about people than processes
  • It is more about life on life than overseeing the masses
  • It is more about walking alongside people than it is about staying a few steps in front of them.

The question I ask myself often (and you should ask yourself too) is “Am I wrapped up in the program or am I investing in the people”

I pray for that lady every day.  I hope that wherever she is that she will experience the love of Christ once again and come back to Him.  In the meantime I am searching for more ways that I can reach into peoples lives and help them walk along in their journey.  Are you?





About the Author

Joe McAlpine is the Pastor of Share at Northbrook Church. Northbrook is a growing church just outside of Milwaukee WI. He has been in ministry for over a decade, serving in staff leadership at churches ranging in attendance from 500 to 7,000. Prior to his current ministry, Joe had the privilege of leading the children’s ministry at Northview Church, the 5th fastest growing and 85th largest church in America in 2013. In 2009 he created, a website dedicated to helping leaders in next generation ministry grow spiritually, relationally and organizationally. Joe has a passion to help young leaders of next generation, family based ministries grow into seasoned ministry professionals oftomorrow. Joe lives out his passion for next generation leaders by tapping into his experience as a husband of one, father of four, pastor and life long lover of of learning. Joe has been happily married to his wife Christy for longer than he can remember and has four children, Elijah, Selah, David, and Elisabeth. The McAlpines are originally from the Chicago area. In his spare time you can find him hanging with the family and connecting with as many kidmin people as he can!