Pastor David Smith
Current Ministry RoleLead Pastor @ Lenoir City First Church of the Nazarene
Lenoir City, TN
Years in Ministry25+ Years
Areas of PassionPreaching, Leadership, Bivocational Ministry
AvailabilityShort-term (1-3 months) or Episodic
Why Mentoring?I feel called to this ministry. My father had over 30 go out from his ministry into ministry, I am at a little over half that now, but I am still making disciples! I am also very aware that young ministers (both women and men) are dropping out at alarming rates (about 20%) before they hit their fifth year in ministry. What if they had someone come along side them like I had come along side me and help me through the most difficult times when I was learning to navigate the pitfalls of pastoral ministry? I believe we are called to this as disciple makers, it is not optional. Also, the landscape of ministry now changes so rapidly that there is hardly time to adjust before we are pulled by culture in one direction and the church is not yet ready to deal with or adjust to the speed at which our culture changes. Doug Paul says in Kingdom Innovations that speed of cultural change was generational (about 18 years) but now the culture change that used to take about 18 years, takes only about 18 months. I can attest to this! When young ministers do not have the foundational tools and maturity to navigate this they get chewed up and spit out by a church or swallowed up by culture and they quit. Even after 25 years in ministry, I wrestle with this, especially in the post pandemic world where even the rules change daily and politics is the dominant religion. I don't know everything, at times I feel less equipped than when I started, but I have navigated 25 years of ministry and I may be able to help in my next 25, get who is up next through so they too can mentor the ones after them. Because I have already committed to the LiV program at TNU as a long term mentor, my availability would be for an episodic mentoring relationship for the foreseeable future.
Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster--this book helped establish me in spiritual disciplines that serve me well to this very day.
Wild At Heart by John Eldredge--This book gave me a wake up call about being
real as a husband, and as a leader, and what it looks like to lead my family and church with integrity.
Missional Essentials by Brad Brisco and Lance Ford & The Externally Focused Church by Rick Rusaw and Eric Swanson These two books helped me move the doctrine of holiness from a come and see to a go and be understanding that moved me to incarnational praxis.
Generation to Generation: Family Process in Church and Synagague by Edwin Friedman--This book has helped me navigate church sociology going into established churches that needed a turn around but were stuck in old systems and methods of operation.
The Call To Preach: The Art of Sermon Preparation by Dr. Steve Estep. Before this was a book, I wrestled with all these seriously practical tools with Steve, (who I consider one of my best friends) and had I known all this at the outset of preaching every week, my life would have been better and my congregations would have been nourished in healthier ways.