I received the following email once from someone in ministry:
“I serve in a ministry in my church. Worship has always been my passion. I’m in my 20′s. Over the years I discovered my pastor is a very self centered person, full of himself and his achievements, who doesn’t motivate anyone at all. This has left the church very empty in terms of vision and projects. I don’t know how to be free with him. I’m very afraid of give my opinion as I know it will hardly be accepted. A lot of people I consider important have left the church because of that. I’m fed up with this church environment where there’s a lot of cynism and fear. This has also confused me a lot in terms of my own ministry…”
After some back and forth email discussion, I asked their permission to post the nature of their question. I figured they weren’t the only person to deal with this sort of thing. After some discussion, we put together these bullet points. Maybe they will help you if you too face this kind of situation:
- It’s a season. Not matter how excruciating it may seem at the moment, it will not be forever.
- Think 20 years from now. What kind of person do you want to see in yourself when you look back on how you handled this situation? Your character seems to be getting beaten into shape under the fire of relational conflict (imagine a blacksmith forming a chestplate)
- Ask, “What can I learn about leadership through this experience?” Your leadership is in a constant state of flux. Take the initiative to push the flux upward and forward.
- Pray. Pray for the person who seems, in your mind, to be causing a less than ideal atmosphere. Get on your knees and listen. You’ll most likely be surprised to find that God does more changing in YOU than in the other person.
- Remember Matt 18 principle