they shoot horses don’t they

April 30, 2015


To my brother Timothy (all young pastors);

If you want to survive in ministry you have to find a balance between a tender heart and a tough skin. Not everyone in your church is going to love you or even treat you with respect.

Some people go to your church because they were there first, you weren’t.

Some people go to your church because they like the worship leader, the youth pastor, Sunday school, their friends go there, their kids go there, it’s easy to get to.

You on the other hand hopefully go there because you believed God called you to that specific church. There are pastors that believe God called them to the ministry and where they serve is moot. Some pastors want to be there because that particular church is seen as a step up in the religious political food chain.

Some pastors were “sent” there by their denomination and they have no choice.

Just like the congregation, pastors get hurt, wounded, stepped on, betrayed, confidences broken. There are people in your church that want to seduce you. Not always with sex but sometimes with power or even bribery.

Hard to believe that what should be a community of likeminded people filled with love and forgiveness, can be pastoral cannibals’. Where you will be chewed up and spit out.

Thus you always have to believe in your calling, you are called to be faithful to the Master, he suffered and so will you. Remember the Apostle Paul and his hard life:

2 Corinthians 6 English Standard Version (ESV)

Working together with him, then, we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain. For he says,

“In a favorable time I listened to you,     and in a day of salvation I have helped you.”

Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation. We put no obstacle in anyone’s way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry, but as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: by great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger; by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit, genuine love; by truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; through honor and dishonor, through slander and praise. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold, we live; as punished, and yet not killed; 10 as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, yet possessing everything.

No matter what size church I’ve pastored, I’ve always kept a secular job at least part time. One, so they couldn’t starve me out, two, so I wouldn’t forget the struggles of the secular life and its unique problems. Hand to man, heart to God.

God bless you young pastor with all the blessings and trials that make up the ministry.

Pray for Steve as he struggles to accept the wounds that the church gave him and he grows in grace and not be bitter.

God bless from

One Response to “they shoot horses don’t they”

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