Pastoring a church.
Pastoring a church is no easy task, especially if one wishes to honor God in all that he does. It may be that those who ignore the sins of their congregation and only speak happy and upbeat thoughts have an easy time. And why wouldn’t they? Certainly the devil would have no need to bother that church. God won’t be there, but neither likely will the devil. I suspect that many ‘churches’ run along like this, with the pastor earning a comfortable income and the church filled with people drifting along into hell. But if a pastor wishes to stand for righteousness and expose sin for what it is, he’ll find the devil at his doorstep. John the Baptist found this to be true when he lifted up his voice against king Herod’s sin. It cost him his life, but he also forever set an example for all ministers: that we ought to preach truth no matter what the cost.
On the day I was voted in as the pastor of Connect Church, I said to them before the vote: “I will not be a pastor that coddles you into hell.” And I have often told the Lord, “I will preach the truth whether this church prosperous or shutters.” I must say, I have felt greatly the temptation to adjust what I preach for the sake of peace and growth. I know that I have offended some people along the way. I have no desire to. I don’t want them to leave or to dislike me. I want everyone to be happy. But, I also know that I am obligated to God for the souls in my congregation. If I don’t preach truth, God will plunder my soul. If I don’t warn them of judgment for their sin, then their blood will be upon my hands.
I say all this, but I also must report that most of our difficult encounters with church members have been positive. It seems that most want to please God, and some were completely unaware of the wrong that they were doing. What an evil thing for a pastor not to point it out! One congregant, after pointing out their sin, thanked me, saying, “I wish someone would have told me sooner.” I’ve had multiple similar conversations, often hearing, ‘I didn’t know that,’ or ‘The way you explained it helps a lot.’ Not every instance has been positive, but I’m praying that God’s Spirit works in the hearts of those that have heard the truth.
Pray for me as I continue to navigate these unfamiliar waters. Pray that I maintain the understanding that pleasing God is much more important than pleasing man, for the temptation to be a people pleaser is great. Pray also that God would provide for us financially! He has, but we have more to do than just get by. We have a roof to replace (among other things), salaries to pay, community outreaches to conduct. Believe with me for an abundance that we might abound to every good work.
Thank you for your continued support. May God richly bless you and your families!