Friday, June 08, 2007

Frustrated Pastor, Indeed

I decided to google the words, "frustrated pastor" and came up with this interesting blog post about a young guy in LA who is not very happy about the situation that he finds himself in. The writer says:

The sad thing is how many people like Eric I meet on a regular basis …men and women with apostolic fervor and passion desperately thrashing around to find their niche in ministry. And all too many have been led to believe that the only path they can travel to fulfill God’s calling on their lives is pastoral ministry in a local church setting. How tragic.

Sounds familiar, though I want to work in a local church setting to empower people to do mission. The writer continues:

Until Eric and those like him find their niche in apostolic entities where they can thrive, move beyond maintenance to missionality, and be cut loose to see their vision soar, their lives will be models of frustration with a numbing lack of meaning.

Eddie Gibbs notes that 50% of those who graduate from American seminaries and who eventually end up in pastoral ministry drop out within ten years. My guess is that an uncomfortable percentage of that number is made up of the Erics of this world.

After all that has happened in my life, I do wonder at times if I'm going to be a pastor in five years. I remember when I was seminary that the future seemed so bright, full of opportunities. Now, it just seems bleak and hopeless and I feel tired and worn. More often than not, I have wondered if it is even worthwhile to stay in ministry. It seems fruitless at times.

At the end, Sam Metcalfe (that's the writer's name), concludes:

So to Eric and other like him, there is hope. You’re not crazy. You’re not a rebel. There is nothing “wrong” with you. May God lead you to right apostolic entity in the days ahead where you can make your ultimate contribution to the Kingdom.

There are times that I wonder if something is wrong with me. I do hope Sam is correct that things are not hopeless.

For the longest time, I've had a passion to do ministry. As a dear friend has said, it seems like I am ready to burst. The sad thing is that I don't really have a viable channel for it. I tried with a new church plant, and that didn't really work out. So, I need to find something, but I need to find a place where that can happen. Whether I can find that place remains to be seen.

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