Sometimes, I don’t enjoy listening to my pastor.
Pardon me while I ask my pastor (who is probably reading this) to kindly keep reading.
[Pastor Jim, keep reading—it gets better.]
It’s not because he’s a bad speaker, or that he’s boring. Actually, I think he’s a pretty good preacher, and I really appreciate the way he combs through the Scriptures to make it clear for me to understand.
It’s just that sometimes I don’t like what he says.
[I know, keep digging, right? Pastor Jim, keep reading—it gets better.]
A Wonderful, Awkward Series
Currently, Pastor Jim is preaching on Grace—what a marvelous, multi-faceted truth to explore! But it’s one that can go from warm-and-fuzzy to poignantly convicting, and fast.
For example: two weeks ago, the sermon was on gracefully protecting the weaker brother/sister (Romans 14), and the practical element included the issue of modesty—a grace that a woman extends to her brothers. It was an excellent application, but not easy to hear.
Then a week ago, we moved to Ephesians, where the God’s grace is celebrated in chapter two, and applied throughout the rest of the book. Pastor Jim preached right through to how it works in everyday relationships: a wife’s submission to her husband, a husband’s love to his wife, and the respect of a worker to his boss.
It was a double-truth-whammy for the women those two weeks. Not that he didn’t have anything to say to the men, I just thought it was an interesting progression of events. And naturally, as a woman, those parts stuck out to me.
Conveniently, Pastor Jim was out of town this past Sunday, ministering at Camp Barakel.
(Okay, that charge runs about as deep as a kiddie pool. So, uh, not very.)
[I make NO accusations. Pastor Jim, keep reading—it gets better!]
Why I Still Like Him
So yeah, sometimes I don’t like listening to my pastor.
But it’s not my pastor’s fault—the Word of God is what does that, and on a regular basis (Hebrews 4:12,13).
In fact, I’m really glad my pastor’s sermons make me squirm. It confirms his and our church’s firm commitment to God’s Word, which is something that is becoming increasingly rare today.
In II Timothy 4, it says that many people aren’t looking for truth. Instead, they only want the warm-and-fuzzy, but not the poignant, faith-deepening, life-changing truth.
For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.
I Timothy 4:3-5
Pastor Jim is committed to the truth of Scripture, and not what will please itching ears. He is always sober-minded. He endures suffering (including and beyond what this post has inflicted). He’s an evangelist, and he fulfills his ministry well.
So maybe sometimes I don’t like what Pastor Jim has to say.
That’s why I love, value, appreciate him.