The following article Analysis of Stan Toler’s Practical Guide for Pastoral Ministry. The work is to be 6 pages with three to five sources, with in-text citations and a reference page. The individual spiritual maturity of pastors is at the heart of Toler’s writing. Towards this end, he stresses the lordship of Christ in all areas of a minister’s life.
He discusses how the pastor should behave in public as well as private. He also speaks to how the man of God should interact with his family, friends and acquaintances and the members of his church. Personal devotion, obedience, and integrity are all strongly emphasized by Toler within the text. He sees a healthy personal walk with God as the wellspring from which an abundant ministry flows from the pastor to his family, his church and the world at large.
In chapter one he outlines six characteristics of great pastors. He says that they know how to pray, meaning that they are fervent in praying and actively seek time alone with God. He also says that effective ministers have strong personal integrity. For Toler, this means having the courage and humility to admit when one has made a mistake. He writes:
A great pastor always speaks the truth and has the courage to correct his or her mistakes. The words “I’m sorry” aren’t pulled from their mouths like an impacted tooth. Great pastors take responsibility for their actions. They lead with integrity. (Toler 17)
He also emphasizes that great pastors must be flexible in how they deal with practical concerns. They don’t take a “my way or the highway” attitude in dealing with church boards, elders or deacons, or laypeople in general. Also, they are effective team builders, have a sense of direction and a vision for the future, and finally they also demonstrate great commitment to their calling from God. Going forward from chapter one, Toler develops these important themes by detailing what the pastor should do in terms of marriage and be being a father.