Going from good enough to great

January 13, 2021
Happy New Year! I know that those are welcome words for many of us, myself included. Given the events of the past year, we are all ready to return to some semblance of normal, although normal will undoubtedly look different than it has in the past. Most people say they are tired and weary about how much of life has been altered since March of 2020. I resonate with Paul’s writing in Philippians 3:13, “forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to those things that are ahead….” 
 
When we consider all the unwanted changes that congregations have had to accept this past year, it becomes obvious why disagreements between fellow church members and church leaders about how we function as a church family can become contentious. 

Excerpt from this podcast:

Have you stopped to realize who in the church is expected to maintain peace, keep everyone happy and convince the membership to cooperate together in carrying out the mission of the church? Who is the person that is caught in the middle and placed in a no-win predicament because everyone cannot have what they want? That individual is the pastor.

 
Early last fall, Thom Rainer published an article on his Church Answers website titled, “Six Reasons Your Pastor is About to Quit.” 
 
According to Rainer, some of those reasons include general weariness and fatigue from the ongoing impact and effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on their lives and ministries. Pastors are discouraged about the degree of discord, division and disagreement within the congregations about how best to navigate the pandemic and its aftermath, as well as other issues of our day. Pastors are also discouraged by an increased amount of criticism that they receive, either directly or indirectly.


by Milton A. Hollifield Jr.  
/  Executive Director-Treasurer  /  Baptist State Convention of North Carolina

Editor’s Note: Josh Reed serves as a senior consultant for Adult Evangelism and Discipleship and Georgie Robinson serves as associate professor of missions and evangelism at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. 

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