Welcome to the Greene Street Letters. It has become my venue for sharing what is going on at Vineyard Recovery Church. Don't let the word Church scare you. The Greene Street Letters is a daily posting to simply say that there is more to life than what you see. More to life than "stuff". My simple take of 60+ years of following Jesus. Some days were good days...some days I managed to get off in the ditch. He is worthy of the pursuit, so that is what I do........I pursue Jesus in everything I do. Not the Jesus of the church. Not the Jesus of the denomination. Nothing wrong with those things, but Jesus is so much more. Thanks for dropping by and I hope you return from time to time to stop and ponder your own relationship with Jesus. God on you....mb
Sunday, March 26, 2017
Truth About Pastor's
What is Going on with those who are supposedly called to ministry? Are pastor's held to a higher standard that is unreasonable? Are they suppose to be spiritual supermen who can leap any problem with a single bound......dissect Greek And Hebrew with no thought at all? Of course the answer is "No". But the truth is, being a pastor is a lonely, and sometimes frustrating place to be in. The rate of burnout and dropout is staggering when it comes to those who are called to the ministry.There is one question that really needs to be asked by everyone who stands in a pulpit, or leads a church....."Were you really called to be a minister or did you decide that this was what you wanted to do?"
John Wimber had the best understanding of anyone I know on how to discern if someone was called to pastor or not. He would tell them..."Go and do it. If it works, then you'll know you were called..if it doesn't work, go do something else." I know that sounds naive but I tell you that it is the truth of God. By John Wimber saying that "IF IT WORKS," he is in no way saying that if you are successful in building a large church, have huge congregations and raise lots of money then that must be God. No, what John was saying is, "Is there evidence that the Kingdom of God is at work in what you are doing then it must be from God." The measure of whether something is from God is not found in nickles and noses. IT is found in the hearts of the people who become a shared worker in God's kingdom. A desire....an unction.....a tug of heart and spirit by God to shepherd others. .
Here is the truth I received when I was considering answering God's call on my life. I was told by a very wise person that "If you can pastor one....you can pastor ten. If you can pastor ten, you can pastor a hundred". So I set about to see if I could pastor one. I got the opportunity to see if I could take care of one person. Believe it or not, that did lead to ten.....Bottom line is that I discovered that God had called me, and was in the process of equipping me to be a shepherd.
SO here is some truth from another blog I was reading concerning the state of Pastors in this country.
•Surveys consistently place the number of ministers leaving ministry every month in America between 1500 and 1800. That's over 20,000 per year or one about every 2-3 hours. And while a good many of this number are senior pastors, I would estimate that at least half or more are actually associate pastors of every persuasion, from worship to students, from pastoral care to missions, and everything in between. These are the folks I want to talk about. Why so much frustration, so much discontent? Why are they so unhappy and who or what is to blame?
•100% of pastors surveyed said they had a close associate or seminary buddy who had left the ministry because of burnout, conflict in their church, or from a moral failure.
•1500-1800 pastors leave the ministry each month due to moral failure, spiritual burnout, or contention in their churches.
•50% of pastors' marriages will end in divorce.
•80% of pastors feel unqualified and discouraged in their role as pastor.
•50% of pastors are so discouraged that they would leave the ministry if they could, but have no other way of making a living.
•80% of seminary and Bible school graduates who enter the ministry will leave the ministry within the first five years.
•70% of pastors constantly fight depression.
•Almost 40% polled said they have had an extra-marital affair since beginning their ministry.
•90% said the ministry was completely different than what they thought it would be before they entered the ministry.
•80% of adult children of pastors surveyed have had to seek professional help for depression.
•70% of pastors do not have a close friend, confidant, or mentor.
•95% of pastors do not regularly pray with their spouses.
•80% of pastors surveyed spend less than fifteen minutes a day in prayer.
•70% said the only time they spend studying the Word is when they are preparing their sermons.
Now is the time for the people to pray for their pastors. They are in need of spiritual prayer covering as much as anyone else. A wise man told me when I first began to pastor, "Take time to fill your own plate and eat from it. If you aren't healthy, then how can you help anyone?"
God on you....