I was on the phone today (Tuesday) with a pastor friend who is taking a lot of crap at his church. I’ve been there, and I reminded him of some of the lessons I learned:
1. Don’t assume the few numb skulls who are unreasonably giving you grief represent the masses… they don’t! People who are negative, critical, or attacking always act and talk like they represent the majority… they don’t… or you would be hearing from the majority. Most of the silent masses gets your vision and are headed that way. Don’t give unearned weight and credit to the numb skulls!
2. Remember God called YOU – specifically – to where you are for this season. He didn’t call them to pastor your church. Make mistakes, own up to them, and move on… and don’t let anyone make you focus all your time, energy, or emotions on their agenda. Even the worst pastor does more right than wrong – don’t get that turned around!
3. Remember who you work for!!! Who goes into ministry for the pay? The prestige? We go into this work because God makes it impossible for us to do anything else. That means HE is the one whom you have to impress, please, and work for… no one else!
4. DO NOT feel like you have to respond, fix, or reply to every nasty comment, snide remark, or “critique”. Do you chase down the guy who flips you the bird on the highway and feel compelled to make sure he likes you? Is ok with you? NO!!! So why feel unsettled if some in the church do not like you – often that means that your vision/strategy is clear. Some folks will not like you – ministry is not for people pleasers!!!