Last week I found myself in a discussion with someone, and the topic came up about God's Will. (I am not going to mention the person name. And since there have been a number of preachers who have resigned their church in the last year, I am sure there will be those who will say I am talking about the one they know.) "And I am sure any number of people could have asked the same questions of their pastor who resigned the church.
My purpose of this post is to address those who have resigned a church due to struggles within the church, or who have suffered a personal tragedy.
- "Do you believe it was God's will for (preacher) to leave the church he was the pastor and come to his current church?"
- "Do you believe its God's will for (another pastor) to leave and go to another church?" And I gave my answer.
- The response was "How can you know that was God's will or not?"
NOR DO I BELIEVE A PREACHER SHOULD QUIT.
Here I am talking about, quiting the ministry as a result of bad experiences in ministry. If I had quit as a result of getting fired from my first paid position (Southall Baptist Church in 1967) I would have never finished Seminary. We can fall down on our faces in ministry. But we should never quit.
Here I am talking about all those who have been in any kind of church ministry. DON'T QUIT.
THERE ARE MANY IT SEEMS WHO JUST QUIT ALTOGETHER.
What is sad, some of these preachers who are the pastor of some larger churches quit and then go into hiding and as Phil Johnson said, "Then after a year or three, the person resurfaces as an agnostic, and after "coming out," becomes increasingly aggressive and militant in spreading the gospel of skepticism."
TWO POINTS I AM MAKING HERE:
NETWORKING? IS THIS A GOOD WAY TO COMMUNICATE WITH OTHERS?
AND I DON'T KNOW IF 'NETWORKING ' ON THE WEB IS THE RIGHT WAY TO GO EITHER. I AM SPEAKING ABOUT PERSONAL ISSUES.
- E-mailing is really a poor way of talking about personal issues. Believe me I have failed in this area. Click and send an email can be damaging to one's friendship with others. ' And some will keep emails for a year, and then send them all at once to others.
MY SUGGESTING TO THOSE WHO STRUGGLE WITH MINISTRY or PERSONAL TRAGEDY.
- If you find yourself resentful and doubting in the wake of personal tragedy, or you get resentful of working in a church, a failed ministry, or whatever, don't cultivate a kind of emotionally-driven doubt about what you know God has put in your soul, spirit and heart. (And if you do, don't salve your mind by assuring yourself that your doubts are "rational.") I do understand and sympathize with the depth of grief suffered by someone who is suffering personal loss such as the death of one's children or the loss of one's health, or getting fired from a position that was successful, or whatever. Job lost everything at once, and his response is the model of true faith: "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him" (Job 13:15) That didn't keep him from saying (later in that very same verse), "Even so, I will defend my own ways before Him." But if the opening phrase of that verse doesn't describe the quality of your belief in God, your "faith" probably will not survive the inevitable sorrows and hardships of life in this sin-cursed world.