Pride is a dangerous animal. So in envy.
Every year I have the amazing opportunity to retreat away from the daily grind of pastoral ministry to attend a conference. I am always so thankful to my church who gives me this ability to recharge my batteries and glean wisdom from wise church leaders.
|Photo Courtesy of bradlomenick.com|
The past few years I have gone to a conference called Catalyst. Its the “cool pastors” conference. Here there is always an abundance of skinny jeans, faux hawks and apple products. For me, it feels much like I’m the dorky kid walking back though the halls of High School. Ok, Ok a bit melodramatic.
At Catalyst I get to hear some of the best leaders, pastors and thinkers who have affected the church world. Throughout the three day event you are presented with the great information, encouragement and ideas to take home. You get to hear from the who’s who of christian leaders on what the sure fire, essential keys to making sure your church can be successful without any problems whatsoever. Even with this surety, I have learned there is always a danger with conferences. Pride and Envy.
A few years ago I learned this. I was pastoring a small baptist church of under 100 people (which according statistics makes it an average church). I remember sitting in the conference hearing idea after idea on how to grow and bring life to my church. I envied the speakers on stage. I thought, surely God doesn’t want to waste me on a church of just 100 people, surely he wants me to take this church which has been averaging 90 people for 70 years and make it a 1000+ member church. My heart wasn’t to pastor the church God had called me to, it was to pastor the keynote speakers church. As a pastor I fell to my sin, pride and envy.
God has grown me since that moment. Thank Goodness. Since that moment I have come to love and find contentment with the church he has called me to. I realized before ever showing up that God’s call for Memorial Baptist Church of Pasadena is not to become a carbon copy of another church. God’s call for Memorial Baptist Church is to be Memorial Baptist Church. I have also realized that God’s call for me is not to become anyone of the speakers on stage, but instead to be Wesley Faulk.
Tomorrow I get to come home to a church I love. I get to come home to a family of faith I cannot wait to worship with. God has been good to me in showing me that I will find life and contentment in serving faithfully where he has sent me, not envious of where he has not.