Trials of the Ministry

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Timtoolman, Jan 2, 2006.

  1. Timtoolman

    Timtoolman
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    Everytime this comes up I find that many if not most pastor say the ministry it the toughest job or one of them a person can have. And it is so tough no one can understand except the pastor, his wife or kids can't only him.
    As a pastor's son what makes it so difficult to find it to be among the hardest jobs today?

    [editted spelling in title to avoid confusion]

    [ January 07, 2006, 09:52 PM: Message edited by: Dr. Bob ]
     
  2. PastorSBC1303

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    Being a pastor is a tough job. It is tough because it is a situation that you cannot get away from, it is there 24/7. When I worked in a factory, I could put in my 8-12 hours a day, clock out and not think anymore about it until the next day. The ministry of a pastor is not like that. You may come home from church, but it is always there. The emotional and mental stress level is very high. You are called by God to lead a group of His people. The responsiblity in that is tremendous if you desire to do a good job.

    I love being a pastor and I would not trade it for anything. But it is a tough job, and I do not believe that anyone that has not been a pastor can truly understand what it is like. It may not be the "toughest" job out there, but it has to be high on the list.
     
  3. Timtoolman

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    SBC, so you actually work 24/7? actually do you spend at least 40 hours at your office? In the church there are many people who work 40+ hours a week and then teach, visit the sick. Go to the funnerals and stay by the cancer victims bed. Wife and spent last year in the hospital with a friend who's wife had cancer. We spent much time there. They had other couples who spent every moment outside of work at the hospital with them. I never once saw the pastor there, although I know he went. This may not be you but our pastor comes and goes pretty much as he pleases. Takes lunch whenever he wants and goes down to NC to visit the kids from our church that are at camp there. Halling the wife and other kids. He gets 3 or 4 weeks vac. but can really take whatever he wants. He decides what vac. is. Now we also have 5 pastors at our church with a attendance of 450.
    I think the old work ethic from the old days is dead. Father and father in law both thought it proper to spead at least 40 AT THEIR job(both pastors) besides teaching, visiting and funneral.
    I don't know SBC, I just don't see if too often. If you are one of those that love the ministry and don't mind putting hours into it like a lot of lay people do also then my hat is off too you. I think that is the way it should be.
    Let me add I don't begrudge my pastors free time but I would not let him stand in front of me and tell me how rough his job is. Because I know! And I am willing to bet most pastors do not put the effort into the ministry that HE DOES.
     
  4. TaterTot

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    No one here is saying "poor me, poor me". You brought it up. And since you did, I will say that as a pastors wife, I know the struggles of the life as well. Sure, there are flexible hours for lunch. So? We can be found "halling" our kids when possible to youth functions and other events. So? We thinks its great they are exposed to it. We are involved in the lives of teens and they are involoved in ours. Why shouldnt we go?
    I think its a wonderful life and would not even consider anything else. But let me tell you, I am sure you were sheltered from some things as a pastors child. We shelter our kids. How do you tell a kid when "Christians" say mean and ugly things about their Dad, Mom, and even them, with no basis. My husband has a retarded brother, and a very active woman in our church made the claim that she is sure our children are too, since it apparently runs in the family. I honestly believe some folks are playing for the other team. Thats just one example and I wont lengthen my post by giving more.
    The majority of our folks are not that way. They are loving and good and want to seek the Lord in their lives. If a church was full of people like that and all a pastor had to do was preach/equip, then sure, maybe it would be a cushy job.
    But many times a pastor (and often the wife) must be teacher, counselor, chaperone, student, financial expert, secretary, janitor, spouse, parent, pet the sheep, keep the peace, and more. And he must do these all well. And most people expect him to remain poor or close to it. We cannot say what we think or feel, like others do. We arent "allowed" to have family problems like others do. No one wants to know those things anyway, except busybodies and gossips so they can tear into more juice.

    Do you know that a starting salary for a pastor with a doctorate is often a third less than its secular equivalent? Not that I am complaining. Its worth every sacrifice. We are grateful for the educational opportunities God has provided. But its the truth.
    So whats so hard about the life? Its not really that hard. But attitudes like yours make it difficult to deal with honestly.
    I get really aggravated to hear comments about the preachers family's easy life. Its a great life and in many ways it is easy. But darlin', I think you should just thank God for the easy life you had as a pastors kid and go on about the ministry He has called you to. [​IMG]
     
  5. El_Guero

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    First, did you intend trails or trials?
     
  6. PastorSBC1303

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    I probably spend 35-40 hours a week in my office studying, counseling, administrative stuff. Then I visit folks every week that are sick,people who visit the church, evangelistic opportunities each week. Then there are committee meetings and church functions many evenings.

    Then there is the aspect of it that no one can understand unless you are in the middle of it. The mental aspect of it that goes on 24/7, which was what I was referring to in the previous post. Your mind is constantly going over things in the ministry..sermons, people, prayer requests, problems, etc, etc.

    Tim, I think you are basing your thoughts on all pastors based on your pastor and from what I have seen in ministry your pastor is the exception and definitely not the rule.
     
  7. El_Guero

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    Secondly,

    It is like when I was a sergeant in the US Army. I would be standing there with my day planned out and the phone would ring. Change of plans.

    There is no one else in the church that can lead God's people at that particular time. If there is, they are the pastor.

    And you add to that the requirement of preaching every week. It takes me about 15 - 25 hours per sermon.

    And if your pastor is lazy, so be it. But, to judge all pastors that way is a pretty broad stroke of the brush.
     
  8. TaterTot

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    PS

    Sure there is a lot of sitting around talking. Life the time my dh had to tell some kids that their brother had died. And the hours upon hours he spends with cancer patients discussing their upcoming death. And helping people understand why they cannot seem to stay faithful in a marraige or relationship. You just cant leave that stuff at the office. its way more than preaching.
     
  9. exscentric

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    Had a good friend that went from Bible college into the pastorate. He had never worked at a full time job, and was in the pastorate a number of years.

    His church dismissed him (Long stupid story) and he took a secular job to pay the bills.

    He told me he had no concept how hard it was for the working man in the pew till he was doing it for a few months. He was involved in another church and quite busy with it all.

    I'm sure most don't appreciate the pastors end of it, but also know a lot of pastors that don't understand the pew end of it either.

    I know a lot of men like pastorsbc and know a lot like timtoolman speaks of - afraid the timtoolman group is growing faster than the other - just my own personal observation.

    When tentmaking I filled in for about a year for a group and was paid $200 a month for a few months then nothing the rest of the time. I worked a forty hour secular job and did lots of stuff around the church plus preaching/teaching. They hired a part time man and started him off at $2000 a month and he was retired - complained about all the work and the church leadership felt bad that he was so loaded down - doing less than I had been doing for the most part - perspective varies me thinks.

    :D
     
  10. TaterTot

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    I am sure that the man in the pew has it hard too. I know many folks who are very dedicated to their church in their off-work time, so thats a great point.
     
  11. Timtoolman

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    That is the pt I made. Many with a job that requires you to be on the job do not have this pleasure. They miss thier kids activities, games and growing up. I also said that I do no begrudge my pastor that.


     
  12. Timtoolman

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    sorry I hit a wrong button. Here is the entire post.

    That is the pt I made. Many with a job that requires you to be on the job do not have this pleasure. They miss their kid’s activities, games and growing up. I also said that I do no begrudge my pastor that.


     
  13. PastorSBC1303

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    Tim, I think you pretty much have your mind made up about pastors, and that is fine you are welcome to your opinion.

    I also think that no matter what you experienced as a pastor's child that you will never understand fully the world of a pastor until you walk in his shoes.
     
  14. Timtoolman

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    I have walked as closs as you can without being one. We disagree for sure Pastor. It is not a bad thing though as I have stated before. I am happy for any brother who has a good job. I am one who does have one and am thankful for it. I am not out to make pastors lazy. It is a high calling I think, but I still speak the truth.
    I am not saying it is not work either. Just when you weigh things I am hard press to say it is one of the hardest. And if you enjoy your job that makes it all the more so.

    God bless you in your ministry. I think we would get along fine. We are both passonite about things but when it came time to do the Lords work I think we would be just fine. Maybe someday I will get a chance to visit yhou sometime.
     
  15. PastorSBC1303

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    Anytime Tim.
     
  16. TaterTot

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    Tim,
    sorry if it seemed I jumped on you twice (?). You are the one who took my thread in that direction, and it just pushed my button I guess.

    I really didnt feel that you were correct. I would have stated so if I had. I do agree with you that there are alot of things that are easier in pastoral life than in the secualr world. We can certainly agree to disagree. [​IMG]
     
  17. gb93433

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    I grew up on a farm and we got up at 3:30 AM to get the cows in and milk them. Seldom did we get to bed before 8:30.

    When I pastored I did the same thing.

    I have found that anyone who works hard will be tired at the end of a day and will always do their best whether or not anyone is watching. Working is not about how hard you work compared to others but about doing your best.

    I have pastored, managed a branch in a very large company, and owned my own business. To be successsful there are many similar things to be an entrepreneur or be successful in any endeavor. Success is never accompanied by laziness.
     
  18. gb93433

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    Maybe you should think about unionizing pastors so they can get protection against poor church leaders and pastor search committees who lie to the potential pastor and then he finds a huge surprise. Unionizing pastors would make it tougher to terminate a poor pastor and promote a good one too. It would give them good job security, health benefits, vacation and retirement.
     
  19. Timtoolman

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    Maybe you should think about unionizing pastors so they can get protection against poor church leaders and pastor search committees who lie to the potential pastor and then he finds a huge surprise. Unionizing pastors would make it tougher to terminate a poor pastor and promote a good one too. It would give them good job security, health benefits, vacation and retirement. </font>[/QUOTE]Your a funny man gb, think about what you just wrote! They have all that already. If you want me too explain it too you I can!
    Sounds like you have had a bad experience.
     
  20. Timtoolman

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    No problem Tatartot, I am hoping you just misunderstood me. I just was saying that the ministry is not all that more difficult than alot of other jobs. I feel like the ones argueing with me are trying to say "yes it is the most difficult job ever". When I was younger it seemed that I knew pastors and others in the ministry who loved it and show it. Now a days it seems hard to find those.
    And, as I was thinking last day or two, that comparing seculiar work with a calling of a pastor really is apples and oranges.
    I am willing to admitt I have a great job. Most pastors would consider it a vacation to come and do my job. Hasn't always been that way but I have a great job. I teach health and safety classes to GM factory workers. Fork truck safety, hazardous material, lifts, body harnesses for those working at heights, and many other.
    I guess I was just looking for a "the ministry it the greatest" from anyone. But I never said it was easy either. I am a pk after all.
     

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