Are you fake around your pastor?

Check out this quote.

Dear God,

I was a pastor for 23 years. It killed me. I am not sure I was every called to it. As you know, the overwhelming numbness finally caved in all around me. Now, I am on the outside of the church looking in and I don’t like what I see. Why do we have to be fake to be a Christian or part of a church? How did we buy the lie that showing up occasionally was the same as a relationship with you? Now that I am not a pastor, people are honest with me. I had no idea how hard life was for so many people because when they came on my “turf” they pretended just as much as I did. I feel hope inside God. Now, without the job I feel like you let me go through everything to understand pain. I want to do what I can, but I feel like a failure every day. Can you still use me? link

While I can’t identify with the feeling far from God or having felt fake with God while serving at a church, I can definitely tell that people are more honest with me about their lives now that I don’t work at a church full time. Why is that? Was there something in my title that made me someone you couldn’t speak openly with? Did you feel like I couldn’t help? Did you feel like I didn’t want to know? Were you trying to protect me? Do you think I’d judge you? Not love you? Tell others you were human? Were you looking for an escape when you were around me? Did I project myself as someone who couldn’t understand? Was I above your struggles? Was I intimidating? Was I uncaring? Was I too transparent? Not transparent enough?

The thing is, I’m not done being a church leader… at least I hope not. I just want to know. 

HT to Andy

By Adam McLane

Kristen and Adam live in the San Diego neighborhood of Rolando with their three children.

3 comments

  1. The Church isn’t a building or the idea and connotation that surrounds it. The Church is the body of Christ. Followers of Christ.
    ‘Church’ as the modern meaning would suggest, is similar to the 76% of Americans that claim to be ‘Christians’ (source: adherents.com). Not always as it was intended. I do not, in any way, claim to know the condition of one’s heart. That is for God to know and judge alone. What I do claim is that Christianity and Church have become institutionalized and, as a result, are seriously missing the point.
    From the outside looking in, ‘Churches’ are becoming clubs of elite, sub-groups that create divisions of people. There are more efforts in ‘churches’ to increase their numbers, fund their programs, and finish first in their conference rather than teaching the World how to have a relationship with Christ.
    I have taught this many times and still stand firm. There is a difference between being a Christian (fire insurance) and being a Follower of Christ (relationship with Jesus). I have been ridiculed by educated pastors and scholars for NOT being a graduate of Seminary. As if to say I can’t know Christ well enough because I haven’ gone to school. I have been shunned for suggesting more focus should be placed on relationship and trust building of guests and visitors and NOT the building fund. I have seen arguments within the church split and divide the congregations because of the Laws and Rules of a particular denomination. Does any of this sound like the Pharisees in the Temple?
    I applaud you for recognizing that there is a SERIOUS problem with the modern connotation of the world. We are taught to look beneath the surface and not to judge. But that is not the way of the world. The surface of the church is what the world will judge us by. Unfortunately, the surface is becoming filthy in some cases.
    You aren’t done being a church leader. I’m not done being a church leader. But the Church is the Body of Christ. It doesn’t have to be in a building. Successful Leadership is measured by the improvements made by those in your circle of influence. Lead your church (the body of Christ within your circle of influence) as best as you know how. And you know to remove yourself and allow the Holy Spirit to guide you and work through you.

  2. I would highly suggest for you, and any one else interested to read the book ““The Devil’s Delusion: Atheism and its Scientific Pretensions.” by self-professed secular Jew and mathematics/philosophies teacher David Berlinski.
    This tells the story of a Jew who was forced to dig his own grave prior to being shot by a German soldier. Prior to being shot, the old Jewish man advised the German that “God is watching what you are doing.” The Jewish gentleman pointed what i think is the real problem with atheism. “If you have the time please check the book out

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