My brother had a shirt that I loved. It read, "Pastors are People too"
I think this was intended to send a message to people, that pastors are also people, and not to expect perfection.
I think I would rather now, in light of many things, rather have the shirt read; Pastors, you're people too.
I am getting a little tired of pastors flaunting, dangling, and abusing the role that they have. As if they are something special, as if they should be idolized, revered, and placed high above others. As if the religion and the ideals that they want people to follow are less about Jesus, and more about them.
We all have one. Our favorite pastor. Our favorite speaker. Someone that cuts through our heart and soul, and resonates with how we feel and we process our faith.
Looky here folks, pastors are great. I love pastors. I just don't think we should LOVE the pastor more then we love the message of the pastor.
In my opinion there are two things that happen when we place pastors highly up on those little stools:
1. They have farther to fall (and they will, they will eventually fall and let you down in some way or another--after all they are PEOPLE not DIVINITY)
2. The higher we place them, the lower we place Jesus
I love pastors. I have already said that. I am not suggesting that we don't RESPECT and treat our pastors with honour and dignity. I think it is important for the church to value and love their pastors, and those who labour for the Lord. I am just tired of people loving pastors more then they love Jesus. Defending pastors more than they defend Jesus. I am especially tired of pastors being loved so much, and given so much power, that they use it to hurt people. After all pastors, you're people too.
Please don't think that I am hating on pastors, I am not.
I am simply challenging the idea that we must treat these men and women like demi-gods. That we must worship the way they say, that we must look like them, that we must act like them, and that we must listen to them--even when it conflicts with the words of Jesus.
1. When we place pastors high up on a little mountain and we worship them, it only gives them farther to fall and harder landing. This isn't a contest to see who can be the coolest, hippest, well known pastor on the planet. This isn't about the pastor! If your pastor preached a good message, or a great message, or even a fantastic message, it has less to do with him and more to do with the gifting that God has given them. Pastors are not better than you, they aren't an untouchable group of elite people. They are people. A pastor who wants you to treat them like they are above you really hasn't understood their calling (See Luke 9:48). Pastors, your people too. So act like a person, be real like a person. Admit that you have flaws. That you are imperfect, that you are a sinful being. Admit your humanity.
2. I know that Judah Smith is a great speaker. I know that Carl Lentz is a great speaker. I know that the world is FULL of great speakers. They are just messengers however, they are just people being used by God to convey a message. Love the message, not the messenger. The more we love the messenger, the easier we make it for the messenger to love the messenger. When that happens, and they start to abuse the power and message that they have been called to give, God shoots the messenger. Ok, so maybe God doesn't shoot them per say, but He gives and He takes away. Start loving yourself and thinking your untouchable and you will perhaps understand the meaning of that little nugget a little better. Give the honour and the glory to God (cliche time) and stop giving it to the messengers of the greatest message ever given. Stop giving your love and your devotion to a man or woman, because they will always let you down. When a pastor gives a great message, praise God and thank Him for using his SERVANT to bring it.
Here is my plan for the future. Stop saying things to the up and comings like...
"...leader of the next generation"
I think we should start saying things like....
"...A servant like Jesus"
"...A vessel to be used by God"
I am a pastor, but I don't want to lead anything. I am a follower. I am a follower of Christ. I cant lead you anywhere but to death and destruction.
DON'T follow me. I am not a leader. I am a follower. Follow Christ.
AND if you need help finding him, I know where to look. I can help you find him, I can help you learn about him, I can pray with you.
BUT I CANNOT LEAD YOU.
No man can lead you to salvation, no pastor, no evangelist, no worship leader, only Christ.
Its my job to serve you, to care for you, to love you.