Take me to your leader.
Is that what it was like when you were pastroring the Vineyard David? *wink*.
So much depends on the leader. – Does the pastor refuse to listen to gossip, and insist the gossip-giver meet alone with the person that offended him, then with witnesses, and finally with the church authorities [Matt 18:15]? – Does the pastor feed the sheep, seek out the weak sheep and recognize/stop the strong sheep that are shoving the weak ones out of the church [Ez 34]? – Does the leader find the sheep that have left the his/her church and guide them to good pasture – whether his/her old church, a new church, or an online community [also Ez 34]? – Does he/she meet with other pastors/leaders within the city as equals – for you are all brothers [Matt 23]? Does the leader spend time personally among the hungry, thirsty, homeless, those lacking clothing, the sick or those in prison [Matt 25; Is 58]? Churches are well known as beds of gossip filled with words by the immature and the frightened; territories that are being controlled by power-hungry ‘elders’ and ‘deacons’; places that are so short-sighted that the leader abandons you when you leave the church; and as communities that are blind to the needs of the least that believe. Yet the leader, man or woman, that lives just those 4 changes above, stands in such stark Christ-like contrast to the darkness of the church-group-think that I offer(a) if the church populace has rejected God, then the church populace will reject the leader; or (b) if the church populace has desired to become like Christ, they will imitate the leader. Much love in Christ always and unconditionally; Caryn
The western style Church model is flawed, it is based on a corporate business model and can never work. The way it is set up, makes it a breeding ground for power struggles, vanity, showmanship, jealousy, envy, judgmental attitudes, guilt tripping, etc.