Consider the Lilies..: Church leadership. part 1   

Aug 22, 2012

Church leadership. part 1

Lets start with Trust..

I have serious trust issues when it comes to authority figures..  To be more specific, I have serious trust issues when it comes to male authority figures..  It goes all the way back to childhood, it's really too long and far too personal to go into here..  Lets just say that submitting to authority is not something that comes easily for me..
I'm not saying I'm a rebel or anything, I can submit to God because after all, He's God, the ultimate authority..  I can submit to my husband because he has proven over and over that he can be trusted, his decisions are sound and made with the correct motives, and pretty much everything he does, he does for my benefit..
But submitting to church leaders?  That's a different story..  To be completely honest, I just don't trust them..

Now I wan to make this perfectly clear..  The leaders at my church are good, trustworthy people!  They have never done anything that would ever cause me to question them or their motives..  They are anointed by God to lead our church, educated in Scripture, and the have the best interest of the church at heart..  They love Jesus, the church, and us..
But, with the exception of two women, all of the leaders are men, and like I said, I have trust issues..  Especially with men..

Obedience is a big thing for me..  Above all, I want to be obedient to God and the Bible says to submit to our church leaders as we would to Him..  So I submit..  I wish I could say that I submit easily with a peaceful heart, but I can't..  I submit because the Bible tells me to..
But I want to happily submit and I want to feel peace about it..  So I pray and ask for conviction and I ask Him to challenge me, to do whatever it takes to teach me to trust them..

Whenever we ask God to teach us something, very rarely do we wake up one morning and just 'know' it, you know?  Sadly I have not jumped out of bed yet with a brand new attitude..  If the answer came to me that easily, I doubt I would hang on to it for very long any way..  Instead He puts me in situations where I am given the opportunity to trust..  It is up to me to choose whether or not I will..
Take last Sunday for example:  During the sermon, the pastor said something that bumped me..  Really bumped me..  In all honesty it ticked me off..  As soon as I heard it I thought "did he really just say that?!?  What the heck is he thinking??"
I was so annoyed by what he said that I stopped listening to anything else he had to say and missed out on a big portion of the sermon..  The rest of that day, all of Monday and most of Tuesday I grumbled to myself about it..  The thought festered and made me angrier the more I thought about it..

On Tuesday evening while I was sitting on the porch (I seem to hear God better on the porch) A bunch of  thoughts just whooshed into my head..  What if I had taken what he said out of context?  I didn't listen to the rest of the sermon, maybe he explained what he said a little more?  Maybe he didn't mean it the way I understood it?  Maybe I'm just being stupid?
Then I thought of all the things I could have done:

  1. I could have asked him about it (duh). I could have gotten into the mile-long pastor line after service and asked him.  I could have sent him a text and asked him..  Just yesterday I went to his office to borrow a book, I could have asked him then..  
  2. I could have asked another leader, I mean we have 12, I am sure one of them could have answered me..  The guy who came over on Monday to pick up a DVD is a pastor, I could have asked him.  I walked past 6 pastors yesterday, I could have asked any one of them!
  3. I could have told myself "this man was put in this position of leadership by God, he knows what he's doing" and just trusted that.. I'm honestly think that this is the one I should have went with from the get-go.
But I didn't do any of those things..  I just chewed on it for 3 days..  So I blew it..  God gave me an opportunity to trust and I blew it..
This morning as I write this I am reminded of something a pastor told me last week- "If God trusts me to lead, it interests me that a person can't"..


But it wasn't a total loss..  I learned a lesson..  One I won't forget..  
I'll do better next time..

So please, unless your church leaders are living in sin (provable sin, not just that you have a hunch) give them a break..  Show a little grace..  Trust that your pastors understand that they are living under God's authority and leading you where God wants you to be..  A lot of pressure comes with leadership..  To whom much is given, much is required..  They will be held accountable for how they shepherd God's flock and they know that..  Honest!  They even told me so ;)

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