About Me

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I am the Pastor/Teacher of Rivers of Joy Baptist Church in Minford, Ohio since August 2008.  I am married to Charity since June 14, 1969.  I have four grown children.   Having served in the local church for over forty years as Pastor/Teacher, Asso., Youth Pastor, Minister of Education, Building Upkeep, Camp Director, Sunday School Teacher, etc. Also I have worked in the public place for as many years as I have preached. Charity and her sister are co owner of Union Mills Conf. (Bakery) in West Portsmouth Ohio

PERSONAL STRUGGLES AND MINISTRY

SOME JUST FALL DOWN


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?"
Many preachers will say this, "The Lord is moving me to leave this church, and go to another church." I hear that a lot. It is true? 90% of the time, its not the will of God for a preacher to leave a church, if God has called him to that church. Nor do I believe its God's will for a church to call another pastor of a church to come to their church. But this is my opinion.

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 times we need to leave a ministry, I understand that, what I am talking about is quiting doing what we believe the Lord has called us to do. For four years I was unable to preach and teach in a local church on a regular basis. I found myself rather discouraged. Until one Sunday, one of the members of the church said, "Charles, you will always have an attitude of a pastor, and it shows while you are in this church." While the leadership of the church was not willing, the people in the church knew it. So I came to understand, there are more than one way to be used of the Lord.

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."

And so often these men who were in these churches that quit, one was addicted to pornography, another was having an extramarital affair, and the third had decided to openly indulge a homosexual bent he had struggled with secretly for years. No I am not talking about those in the music field, nor the Hollywood crowd, nor in the political field, but those in the Christian field.

TWO POINTS I AM MAKING HERE:

ONE: Good men who really love the Lord, and they get slammed by the ministry, I say to them, DON'T QUIT. Check your motives, check your soul, spirit and heart to see if its right with Christ, and if it is DON'T QUIT. Don't let other people, preachers, and ministries be the last word. Talk to your wife, talk to your children, talk to your close friends, ask them what they see in you. Keep a clear channel with Christ. Listen to and learn what the Lord is doing in your life.

SECOND: Those who are in ministry and are living a secret live of sin, QUIT. No, not the ministry but your SIN. On the other hand, you might need to step down, until you are able to seek the right kind of help you need.



NETWORKING? IS THIS A GOOD WAY TO COMMUNICATE WITH OTHERS?

I have found, I don't have close personal follow preachers who really are interested in you and your problems. I had one just friend in Neodesah, Kansas who I would have feel conformable to ask for any kind of help.

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.