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We Want to Go Back!

February 16, 2009

People always want to go back. You can’t get where God wants you to go by listening to people. It just isn’t going to happen.

If you think about Moses as he leads Israel out of Egypt you notice that they almost immediately want to return. People don’t like change. They prefer the status quo.

Some of you may be thinking about our recent election and you may doubt what I say. Didn’t the people vote for change? I would say no, they voted for someone who they thought could return them to the way things were before war. What they voted for was someone who could change things back to how they were.

I know of to many Pastor’s who have had their ministries derailed by promises of change. They interview with a church that says they want to change. They tell them they are willing to do whatever it takes to move forward. They are on board.

Then the Pastor arrives to discover the only real change is to get things back to the way things were. Get the attendance back up to where it was. We want you to get things back to normal before all of this trouble. The only change they want are those that will get them back to a previous place.

But we are back to the problem. The only way you get where God wants you to go is change, real change, not the idea of change disguised as getting back to the good ole’ days. We need change that moves the church forward. That keeps us headed to the promised land of God’s goal.

What does this mean to leaders in the church?

Be ready for disagreement. Moses experienced his fair share. One of the problems you find with churches controlled by the members is that they exert this control to keep things the same.

Why do you think so many turn to church planting? There is nothing to change from or no past to get back to. You get to implement the changes from the beginning so that they are the status quo.

No wonder God is using church plants, God wants to get his body somewhere and we usually resist.

Be ready to move on. This has to be the hardest of them all. If you are really going to follow the voice of God you must be willing to keep moving. How many of the original members of the tribe of Israel made it into the Promised Land? So don’t be surprised if no one wants to follow along, if it is God’s vision that shouldn’t matter. Don’t trade security for progress, bad things happen, just ask Aaron.

The last thing is find some people who you can count on. Moses needed people who had his back. In the end Joshua became his successor and someone who supported him along the way. If you are going to follow God’s vision you must have friends on your side. You can’t make it alone. If your church doesn’t support your vision, if the elders aren’t willing to come to your defense, there isn’t much chance of moving forward.

If you are called to lead you must do as you are told. Don’t make excuses, “people won’t listen”, don’t blame others and don’t settle for an existence that is less than getting where God wants to go. Don’t abandon your calling. How many abandon ministy all together because because people didn’t want to go? Where would God’s people be if Moses or Joshua abandoned their responsibility? Too many ministers are leaving ministry because people won’t go along, well, welcome to the leadership of God’s people.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Jim Sexton permalink
    February 17, 2009 3:30 pm

    I have fallen into a ‘read-but not-reply’ mode lately on the blogs that I read, but wanted to tell you and the others who are writing here to keep up the good work!

    I think that one problem is that many who are in the position to lead are themselves not doing much more than following. They are looking to institutional schools in their brotherhood for the direction, instead of looking to God for it.

    Your point about the 10 who got a glimpse of the promised land but never entered had more to do with their choice to follow their own instincts and direction rather than to lean on God’s. Of that we must also be wary, that we don’t get caught up in conventional wisdom in making our decisions.

    Jimbo

  2. February 17, 2009 5:09 pm

    Thanks Jim for the comment.

    I agree.

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