The Undercurrent of Opposition

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by USN2Pulpit, Apr 5, 2004.

  1. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit
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    Pastors, how do you deal with an undercurrent of opposition? This is when you feel that certain people are quietly sowing seeds of discord - but you have no overt evidence to prove it.
     
  2. Bro Tony

    Bro Tony
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    This can be very difficult and may not be handled in the same way all the time. I would keep that person close to me and speak to him/her and give them the opportunity to voice their problems. Hopefully they will speak to me and I will be able to deal with their concerns. Other than that, as far as the rest of the church is concerned, I would continue to preach the Word and love the people. Everything else is beyond my control.

    God bless you as you minister in His Name.
    Bro Tony
     
  3. gb93433

    gb93433
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    I have been down that road. It is almost impossible at times. As a pastor you are powerless if the people willl not take a stand aginst it. If the people will not deal with it then you are powerless and leave it alone. Pray a lot though.

    An excellent book to read is The Pastor In Profile by Adolph Bedsole. It is no longer in print and may be purchased used.
     
  4. At His Feet

    At His Feet
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    i am not a pastor but i feel this issue is no different than when one may have a friend that is sowing discord. Brother, take it to the One in control of everything. Jesus allows everything that comes into our lives. trust Him that He doeth all things well! I know that He has the power to handle it better than any one of us here.
     
  5. North Carolina Tentmaker

    North Carolina Tentmaker
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    This can be a very difficult situation.

    One of the best seminary classes I ever had was entitled "Pastoral leadership in a small church." I don't remember the textbook but the class used to be available through the seminary extension program of the SBC.

    It is very important to recognize where the power lies in a church setting. It is usually NOT with the pastor. This is especially true if you are new (under 5 years) to the church. Many members may have an attitude of, "This is my church not your church, I was here before you came and I will be here after you go." Especially with the "family chapel" type country churches where I have served you need to recognize that often one or two family patriarchs hold the real seat of power. Is there is a vacuum of godly men than older ladies may hold the power. Whether these people hold elected positions in the church or not, the majority of the membership will follow them. You need to recognize that and use that existing power base, that does not mean compromise, but it does mean courtesy. It means listening to and respecting opinions that may seem contrary to your own and not trying to rule over the flock but minister to them.

    Remember Mark 10:42-45 which says:
    Leadership of a church is not something granted by a nominating committee or conveyed with a seminary degree. You may be their preacher for years before you can truly become their pastor. It involves a level of trust and respect that must be earned.

    How do you get this power and leadership ability in a church setting? You earn it. You earn it by being there, at graveside, bedside, in the funeral parlors and hospital waiting rooms. You earn it by spending time in their homes and with their families. You earn it by performing weddings, funerals, baptisms; by helping families raise their children and bury their dead; by putting their needs above your own; by ministering to them, and it takes time.
     
  6. j_barner2000

    j_barner2000
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    this is the course... It is the next course I plan to take.

    PM 3258 -PASTORAL LEADERSHIP IN A SMALL CHURCH: A study of the unique dynamics of a small church, including suitable styles and methods of pastoral leadership. Recommended by ACE for two semester hours (lower baccalaureate division) in religion.
    Textbooks: Leading the Small Church, McCarty $8.99
    Small Churches Are the Right Size, Ray 9.95
     
  7. North Carolina Tentmaker

    North Carolina Tentmaker
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    Thanks for finding that j_barner.

    That is the class I took and it was great.
     
  8. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit
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    I haven't yet, but I'm planning on taking that one, too. As for the specific problem, I think it's going to be okay for now. I'm not sure how effective I've been in dealing with it, but it seems to have passed.

    By the way, JB, there's an associate pastor position opening up over here at a local SBC church...you interested?
     
  9. j_barner2000

    j_barner2000
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    I will Pray about it.
     
  10. j_barner2000

    j_barner2000
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    I got a call from the church planter/strategist for Northland Association in MI. He has called and asked for references and a preaching tape. I got him to agree to an MP3 being sent
    so I will encode my latest sermon and send it to him tonight... or at least the first half hour.

    There is a church that was falling apart from lack of a pastor and poor treatment from the last pastor. He has helped to rebuild their fellowship and believes I would be a good candidate.
     

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