Monday, July 8, 2013

Oh Plank Eye, Direct Me!

 In my line of work I hear “no” and it doesn’t usually bother me.  I do like "yes" better.  But in sales (and life) you have to learn to accept "No" and know there are lots of fish in the sea and I’m not everyone’s cup of tea, you can say safely.  That said, I do my best and do love what I do. 
Recently when I offered some of my services to someone, the response was one I’d heard many times before, one of loyalty for their current carrier “but I’ve been with them for 25 years” or something like that.  I admire and respect loyalty too. 
Recently when I received this response from a new pastor in the area, it struck me in a few ways, which made me think of my comfort zones and how I need to continue to challenge myself in order to grow….and not grow complacent in life – stagnant water isn’t a good thing.  Ironic is a word that comes to mind.
As I reflected on his occupation with his remarks, it hit me that as a new pastor, people will need to be open to being outside their comfort zone to accept him, get to know him and his worship style too.  To grow a church, new people who attend are trying something new – something outside their comfort zone.  As a Pastor (and congregation) he would understand that and work to make them feel at home, I would think. Obviously the changes he was making in his life with his new position held him to something he was familiar with for many years - so he was staying that course.  Sometimes people get stuck in a rut – the word calls us to  be open to the Holy Spirit and its leading – to respond and get out of our ruts, try new things, live life with open eyes for God’s direction.
We recently said goodbye to our church pastor of 27 years!  Man, we are going to miss our Pastor and his wife.  Long, loyal years of service and he was well liked by all!  So now, we’ll get to know someone new and it will be a growth time – a time of change for our congregation that fills us with joy for something new and exciting, while also a sadness as we leave the old and familiar.  We will be finding the balance for healthy church growth with an interim pastor for one year as we search for that next full time pastor. 
I think to myself – do I have “but I’ve been with them 25 years” of life habits that I should be reviewing – you bet I have some!  So I’ll go look at those planks in my eyes and see what closet cleaning needs to happen because I want growth, freedom and to follow the Holy Spirit in my life.
Lord, direct my paths in your way!
You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand. ~ Psalm 16:11


Dee said...

I can relate to change of pastors...not easy. I pray blessings to you and the congregation with your new pastor.

T.J. Ellis said...

Our pastor has been at the church 28 years as well. That would be so hard, but I do thing sometimes Change is God's blessing to us. Thank you for your words of warmth on my blog about my dad.

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