Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. (Matthew 5:6 KJV)
America is blessed with some of the best bible teachers and preachers in the world. You can turn on the radio or television almost any time of the day or night and be filled with fresh revelation from the word of God.
This is wonderful and should continue because it is one of our ways of evangelizing the world. However, what is wonderful and exciting from one vantage point is challenging and requires adjustment from another vantage point.
Even though this is not trueâ€¦comparing the big and powerful to the local neighborhood church pastor could make him feel that his church and efforts have become antiquated. There is no doubt that many things in the church environment are changing, but I cannot imagine the kingdom of God without the presence of the small neighborhood church. They do not compare to the large mega church with all its glitter, power and excitementâ€¦but they do minister to the mass of church goers.
I am becoming more concerned with the little neighborhood pastor who shows up on Sunday morning feeling incapable of feeding his flock. After all, how can he feed them in the same manner as the powerful radio or television minister? Many of his flock have become restless and have started leaving his church because they say he does not feed them in the same way that some superstar minister does.
What many people fail to realize is that the local pastor was never meant to compare with the superstar preachers. Trying to feed those of his congregation that are already full has become quite a challenge for him. After all, he is expected to visit the sick, call on the unfaithful, bury the dead, marry the youngâ€¦and generally run the affairs of the church. That being the case, how can he find the time that is needed for digging into deeper levels of revelation? What he feeds his congregation may seem simple at times, nevertheless it is the right food for good healthy growth.
You may wonder why I would have such a concern for the neighborhood pastor since I myself am one of those traveling preachers. I suppose comparing the neighborhood pastor to the radio, television and traveling minister is like comparing marriage to dating. There is no comparison.
I am a great proponent of the local church and spend much of my time working with them so they can fulfill their destiny and purpose.
The needs in the local church will remain the same even though its methods of care and outreach may be changing. Perhaps many of the methods in the local church really are antiquatedâ€” but that does not mean that the church itself no longer has purpose.
Having said that I am not sure the challenge of feeding the full will remain a challenge for all pastors today. The point beingâ€¦stay hungry.
Help us in the changing church world to somehow work more closely with one another. Lord I know you are stretching all of us out of our comfort zones in order to pour Your glory on us once again. Thank you Father for Your patience with us in our maturing and help us see the value in your large as well as Your small ministries.
Apostle John Dean Copyright 2009 All Rights Reserved
Alliance International Ministries