The apostle Paul was always concerned about being an example to others. He never wanted people to think that he was better or above them. Instead, he chose to do what no other apostle and in the Bible did: share with us the issues and personal failings in his life.
Unfortunately, very few ministry leaders are willing to follow Paul's example on this issue. Guess I'll have to do it.
Here are four things your pastor is afraid to tell you:
1. Many times I experience difficulty winning souls
Yep... If church leaders were honest, they would tell you that when a person finds out that they are a pastor, it quickly becomes a barrier. The person no longer sees just another person, but in many cases, an enemy.
- Too many pastors only know one language: Church speak. We have created an entire vocabulary of words and phrases that only church folks understand. This is a foreign language to a growing number of the "Unchurched".
- With all of the church scandals, many people, both inside and outside the church view church leaders with skepticism.
- Current culture has passed them by. Their frame of reference is as outdated as their teaching methods. Many leaders and their ministries have become irrelevant. They are irrelevant because they refuse to change without compromise.
- Too many love and covet titles. Pastor, Bishop, Apostle, Prophetess. When this generation hears this, they think - "my grandma", "old school", and yes, "church".
Many of these leaders fail to understand that these "titles", are ministry functions or job descriptions; tasks being performed in obedience to Jesus for the benefit of the Church body.
2. I struggle spiritually and emotionally
Sometimes, we feel like our prayers don't get answered, or the Lord's not hearing us. For this and other reasons, many go into depression, even as far as manic depression.
3. I'm tired, I need a break from ministry
Many have convinced their flocks that we are superhuman. The truth is, we're not. We get tired, too.
For 1700 years, church leaders and "church protocols" have created a culture that has been lead to believe that pastors don't take extended breaks, especially using the excuse that they're tired.
- Who's going to preach while you are away?
- Can you trust them not to start a hostile takeover while you're gone?
- The longer you're gone, fuels the rumor mill.
- Oh, and don't forget about the guilt we feel believing that we're not fulfilling our calling.
As one pastor put it, “It’s difficult for some preachers to be honest. But it’s hard for us to really find that relationship because often, other pastors are trying to compete with you or cremate you."
As you can see, "We are merely human beings—just like you!" Acts 14:15 NLT