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Follower Trap #2

#2 Expecting Your Pastor to Be Your Personal Chaplain
Somewhere along the line, a lot of us fell into the belief that somehow the pastor was supposed to be there for us at every key moment of our lives.  He was supposed to visit us in the hospital, be there for weddings, funerals, crises and through most of the every day moments of life.

There are four problems with this view.

  1. It kills pastors once their church grows beyond 200 people (one guy just can’t do all that, and if you hire more, it just gets irrationally expensive in staffing).
  2. It keeps pastors from their real calling: leading, prayer, and teaching the Word.
  3. It perpetuates spiritual infancy among people in the congregation, never maturing them to a place of direct reliance on God or looking to other Christians to walk with them.
  4. Oh yeah.  It’s completely unbiblical.

The Apostle Paul didn’t sail from Corinth to Thessolonica to do hospital visits.  Nor did he sit around drinking tea and eating crumpets with congregational members.  Nor did he forbid average Christians from praying for each other, visiting each other, being there for each other and loving each other in Christ so he could swoop in and do it for them.

God’s dream of a church is to see leaders equip people to be the church (Ephesians 4). A true biblical community is equipped by its leaders to care for each other, pray for each other, get into the bible together, do life together and be there for each other and the wider community (sounds like community group to me).

I love it when I see Christians caring for each other.  And it’s cool that I get to be a part of that in my own community group and little world, and get to equip others to care for each other and more fully rely on God.

1 Comment

  1. Jeff on January 21, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    Carey, for the sake of pastors everywhere, trumpet this one from the rooftops, will ya?! 🙂 Many congregations have an unhealthy dependence on the pastor. Some people look to the pastor as their own personal shaman or view him/her as an idol. (How many church leaders have heard from people that a visit really isn't a visit unless the dude with his shirt turned around backwards shows up?)

    Thanks for the great reminder, man. J.

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