John Alan Turner

Speaker, Author, Mentor, Coach, Facilitator

The Questionnaire

When a church is looking for a new preacher/pastor, they often develop a questionnaire for candidates to answer. Most of the time, I open these questionnaires with a strong sense of foreboding. Traps abound in these seemingly innocuous documents! For example, I recently read one in which the following question is asked:

Would it be sinful for a youth group or any other group from a congregation to participate in activities sponsored and conducted by the Lord's church where false teachers are speaking or unscriptural activities are being participated in?

Um...I don't even know where to begin. Actually, that's not true. I begin by closing the document immediately and running the other way as fast as possible.

Once I was asked the explain my view of the gift of tongues. I wrote the following: "Tongues are a great gift from God. Without tongues we could not speak or taste our food. The tongue is a powerful part of the human body."

I was recently asked, "Is there anything in your present or past life that, if made public would bring embarrassment to the life and work of [this] Church?" Honestly? Probably! I went to college. I was an adolescent. I am male.

C'mon...is there anyone who would answer "No" to that question?

But sometimes the questionnaire contains legitimate, substantial questions. Take this one, for example:

If you had to name the three most important theological issues of our day, what would they be?

How would you answer that one?