Helping Pastors Get Their Mojo Going

Mojo Sparks

May 7, 2012

A Category or a Conversation?

More articles by »
Written by: Tony McCollum

Nobody wants to be labeled.  Labeling tends to reduce people to stereotypes and caricatures instead of real, complex, unique human beings.

In this video, the always compelling astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson explains why he doesn’t want to be a category and would prefer to be a part of conversation.

Along the way, he shares why he’s an agnostic instead of an atheist and why that’s an important distinction.

I don’t know if other pastors are this way or not but when meeting people I often don’t mention I’m a pastor at first.  In fact, I sort of avoid mentioning it if at all possible.  To be completely honest, I really don’t like it when people introduce me to their friends as a pastor.

It’s not that I’m ashamed of being a pastor.  I’m honored that God has put this call on my life.  No, the reason why I’m hesitant to tell people I’m a pastor is that the term seems to carry a lot of baggage with people and once they hear that term they tend to categorize me in some way.  Some even shut off from me altogether.

I want to really connect with people first.

I just vastly prefer to meet someone, get to know them, have them get to know me a little bit, and then share with them what I do, if it comes up.  I want to really connect with people first.  I want to get to know them and have them realize that I’m a real person and not that weird.  Then, and only then, do I share that I’m a pastor.

I guess I’m just seeking the conversation because, as I see it, that’s where real life connections and life-changing interactions typically happen.

Did you enjoy this article? If so, we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. It would also be great if you subscribed to our RSS feed or signed up for email updates to get more goodness. There’s lots more mojo where this came from!

About the Author

Tony McCollum
I'm the senior pastor of Fusion Church. I've been in the ministry for over 20 years. I'm also the founder of many sites such as, and Most importantly, I like ice cream.



The One Thing Every Staff Member Has to Have

Every staff position is different and, of course, every church is unique as well.  There is one thing, however, that every staff member simply has to have to be effective or productive in any meaningful way. Every staff memb...
by Tony McCollum


Mouring the Eye-Opening Death of Philip Seymour Hoffman

The world lost a great actor last Sunday when Philip Seymour Hoffman died from an accidental drug overdose. Something like this is always so tragic and senseless that is prompts a profound feeling of loss. Even for those of us...
by Tony McCollum



Paid in Full [video]

Okay so this video is in Thai but don’t let that trip you up.  It’s very well done and, dare I say, inspiring. This might make for a great sermon illustration.
by Tony McCollum


Make Your Church Magnetic

The original outreach ninja himself, Pastor Bob Franquiz, has just release a new book called “Pull: Making Your Church Magnetic“. This book distills everything Bob and his team have learned about reaching people and...
by Tony McCollum


I Forgot My Phone [video]

This could be one powerful sermon illustration about community or focus. There’s certainly a sermon in there somewhere. What are your thoughts about this video and what it says about our culture?
by Tony McCollum


Read previous post:
Nit Picking

  It's far too easy to pick someone apart if properly motivated. Ignore your critics.  Decide that you’d rather be...