7 Questions with David Luthy

Name: David Luthy

Current title: Lead Pastor

Current organisation: Bracken Ridge Baptist Church

Married to the wonderful Sarah & Lead Pastor at Bracken Ridge Baptist Church. Previously served as Youth & Young Adults Pastor at 2 different churches before stepping into the role of Lead Pastor in September 2019. I'm passionate about developing leaders and seeing the church become increasingly effective in its mission.

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1. What have you found most challenging as a church leader?

Probably the thing that I have found most challenging as a church leader is expectations; both from others and myself. People carry their own expectations about how things should be done and the results that should occur. I also carry high expectations of myself wanting to achieve well and quickly. Although my own expectations give me a certain drive in what I'm doing, the only one whose expectations should really matter is God's. His expectation is for me to be faithful in what He's called me to do and this can be incredibly freeing.

2. How did you become a church leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?

I had a couple of Pastors invest heavily into me and express that they thought God was calling me into pastoral ministry. They had seen leadership gifts in me through the different ministries I was serving in. I had a strong sense personally that God was moving me towards this, but thought I would pursue pastoral ministry only later in life. My brother and I were speaking about when I might move into ministry and he said to me, "If God's calling you now, why wait?" Later that day I applied for Bible College and began working at the church a year later.

3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?

I'm probably a bit different to some other leaders with my routine. I hop up and get ready fairly quickly. I usually arrive at work early and spend the first part of the day in prayer and reading the Bible. I schedule all meetings and team time in the mornings and save office work for the afternoon. After going home, my wife and I will eat dinner together and catch up on our days. After dinner I'll usually do some exercise while listening to an audiobook or podcast before going to bed.

4. What one book had the most profound impact on your church leadership? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?

It's hard to narrow it down, but "Simple Church" by Thom Rainer & Eric Geiger has helped me greatly in understanding that doing more activity doesn't necessarily produce results. Intentional activity that is driven by a clear mission with an aligned team is what produces results. It's shaped a philosophy in my own mind which is "do less, and do it better."

5. What's the most recent significant leadership lesson you've learned?

When you start at a new organisation you need to "lay low, go slow, and get to know." For the first year at a new place, there is a great deal of learning the culture and tacit rules in the organisation. I've seen far too many leaders make mistakes because they haven't understood the culture before making decisions. Implementing this over the past year has kept me from making some big mistakes.

6. How do you develop a healthy leadership pipeline in a church?

A biblical model of what leaders in the church are called to do comes from Ephesians 4:11-12, where we are called to equip the body for works of service. This is what Jesus spent His life doing with the disciples. He spent three years equipping His disciples and then released them to change the world.

My goal is to equip people in the areas that they are gifted and called, while providing accountability and support. This is something that we are going to be spending more time working on over the next year and I'm excited to see the results.

7. If you had to pick just one story, what would be the most meaningful story from your time as a church leader so far?

Earlier this year I sat with someone who had been a key part of our church as he was passing away. I came to pray with him and share some encouragement from God's word. What I wasn't expecting was that this man would spend most of the time praying for me and praising God for His goodness through his life. This was someone who had spent his whole life blessing others and even in his last moments, he chose to do this.