Scared Straight Pastor Edition

20 Jun

So you wanna be a pastor? Big man on campus. That’s you, huh? Standing up there in front of everybody. Holding your bible, preaching to the people. I can see you now  scooting around the stage, dancing to the “Amens” and applause. Mr. Pastor, Bishop, Reverend, Elder, Preacher Man. Yeah. I used to be like you. Let’s take a walk. “Where are we going” you ask. It’s a little place I like to call “Reality”. I been living there for the last 15 years.

Look at this. What is this? I know what you’re thinking. It’s a blank piece of paper, right? Wrong. It’s a list of all the friends you have at the church you serve. Not hard to remember their names is it? Ministry is a lonely place, buddy. If you are looking to make lots of friends you are headed down the wrong road. Here’s the deal. The people you like leave and the ones you don’t like will stay. You’ll think you have friends. When you start at a new church they’ll invite you over for a BBQ and board games. But the truth is the first ones to ask you over are also the first ones to ask you to leave!

Look at those guys over there. You know who they are? They’re deacons. I know what you are thinking. You’re thinking “They are here to serve the pastor”. Yeah that’s right. Serve you like a tennis ball. Truth is they’re the cold water committee, the dream busters. They are going to make sure you don’t get too excited about growing this church. They’re the head of the puppet ministry and they think you’re the puppet.

And by the way. Your mother goes to this church. And you have eight of them. Word to the wise “I feel like you’re one of my children” isn’t a compliment. It means she is going to tell you what you should do and it would be in your best interest to listen to her. This church believes in church discipline….but only for the pastor.

Listen. You hear that? Sounds like a bunch of fifth graders upset over a game of sandlot baseball doesn’t it? It’s not. it’s the Wednesday night business meeting. And it happens every month. And you get to be the referee. Oh the stuff is real important too. You get to earnestly contend for the carpet color. You’ll be able to sleep so well on Wednesday nights after Betty and Bertha duke it out over what to serve at VBS.

What’s that? Where’s your wife? Oh…she’s busy. Trying to figure out where she fits in to all this. Yeah she’s standing by her man. But she’s also standing by that phone hoping someone will rescue you all from this. She’s in a town she doesn’t know. She is keeping nursery kids she doesn’t know. She is biting her tongue. She is cleaning a house that she will never own. She is concerned about what the church thinks about her kids, her yard, her involvement with the church. She’s pretty busy. Don’t be surprised if she goes to bed early. 

Oh, wanna hear a joke? Too bad. Because you’re going to. And it’s going to be the same jokes over and over. Jokes about fried chicken, being the first in the line at the potluck, only working two days a week, getting your sermons off the internet. My advice would be learn how to laugh like Fran Drescher & do it every time you hear one of those jokes. They won’t stop but they will slow down a little.

I wanna show you something else. Look in there. It’s dark isn’t it? You can feel the heaviness can’t you? Loneliness exudes from that place. No, that’s not rain. That’s tears. You know what this is. It’s Monday. It’s the day you get the most negative phone calls. It’s the day you remember how much you butchered yesterday’s sermon. It’s the day you remember a church full of dry eyes and an empty altar. It comes every week. Fifty-two times a year Monday shows up just to say “Ha-ha-ha-Hi”. You will leave the ministry countless times in heart on this day. Statistics show that if you ever do quit it will most likely be on this day.

Listen up. It’s tough in here. you ask why am I here then? Because God called me & I couldn’t be happy anywhere else. And that’s the only reason you should come.


8 Responses to “Scared Straight Pastor Edition”

  1. Brian June 20, 2013 at 4:26 pm #

    hahahaha, loved it. especially the Fran Drescher voice suggestion. gonna try it

  2. Jason Whitcher June 20, 2013 at 7:51 pm #

    Excellent post.

  3. J R Hines June 20, 2013 at 10:38 pm #

    You forgot to add the kids who come home to find their Mom crying because she just got off the phone with the wife of the Music Director, Treasurer or Chairman of the Deacons who told her people wanted your Dad gone.
    Or how, when you drove up to church in a new used car that your uncle practically gave you, you heard one of the deacons who was smoking in the parking lot mutter “Wow, I sure wish I made enough money to afford a new car. We must be paying you too much Pastor”. Several months later, you realize you haven’t seen that deacon for a couple weeks and someone tells you that his family was camping in their new trailer.
    Others tell you that your daughter’s dress is too short and someone else remarks that she dressed old-fashioned.
    Your kids have to win every Bible Drill or else people say you aren’t teaching them Godly things at home. But they will complain that you always win and it’s not fair.
    The phone rings at midnight and you hear your Dad’s car leaving for a hospital. He gets home the next morning, but the janitor is irritated because that dang feller is never in his office until noon.
    The thank you card from the family he visited will “get lost” in the mail.
    Investing in the stock market for retirement will be “just a form of gambling with the church’s money” – “God will provide, Pastor”.
    And lastly, your week vacation to a national park with a borrowed tent and camping equipment will be way too extravagant,

    • NoteasybeingaPK January 2, 2014 at 2:36 am #

      Wow – I had to double check to make sure it wasn’t my sibling writing this because we experienced these very, and I mean very, things. Sad really when you stop to think about it.

  4. jimmy dickenson June 21, 2013 at 1:54 pm #

    Yep, what it is.

  5. Joey Hall June 21, 2013 at 2:07 pm #

    Reblogged this on No Longer Oxford and commented:
    I know I’m called to be a pastor, so I guess I have to look forward to this. Oh boy 😛

  6. Bill M July 16, 2013 at 9:50 am #

    “Look at those guys over there. You know who they are? They’re deacons. I know what you are thinking. You’re thinking “They are here to serve the pastor”. Yeah that’s right. Serve you like a tennis ball.” That made me bust out laughing. Well done.

  7. Danny September 7, 2013 at 12:28 am #

    I had to laugh to keep from crying, keep blogging and we’ll keep reading.

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