20 September, 2011

Yeah, Preachers Are Just Lazy

It's the same old thing. I cannot tell you the number of times I've been accused of being lazy, that I have a "cushy job", that all ministers are thieves, yada, yada, yada...
Over the years I've been in the ministry, this accusation (attack) has been leveled at me more times than I could begin to count. With the advent of Facebook it has increased greatly. People are always saying, "You are always on Facebook! When do you ever work?"  The only way I could ever prove it would be to betray confidences, (which I WILL NOT do) and show people my private messages, but the fact is, you would not BELIEVE the amount of  ministry takes place  behind the scenes on Facebook!  In that same vein, you would not believe the number of times people become irate at me because they messaged me on Facebook and I did not respond. One condemns because I'm online too much, while others condemn because I was not there enough! How does a guy win?  
I just looked at my private messages on Facebook, and counting ONLY those that would be ministry related issues, I've had more than 70 messages sent to me since Sunday morning.  Things varying from family problems, financial problems, spiritual questions, emotional distress, prayer requests, needing advice,  Biblical questions... and this is just on Facebook private messages in less than 48  hours since church let out this week.  
How about text messages? Another 37 messages since Sunday afternoon. 
Phone calls... you don't even want to go there!  Phone calls because they are upset with me (thus this blog entry!) Phone calls with their idea to help the church grow... (read, things that the pastor needs to do.) Complaints about what someone said, did or did not do. Fussing because the church was not clean enough (Hello? Clean it!!!)  And then there are those who just want to touch base and chat.   
And no one ever considers the administrative aspects of being a pastor. Already yesterday I met with one businessman pertaining to our church needs, looked into several things via internet for materials we needs and have set about trying to come up with a plan to raise the money to do it. I'm working on a deal to save money on having the church plowed this winter, and taking care of reports and insurance requirements.  
I've TRIED to contact people who were missing from church this week. Problem is, when people are gone week after week and you get on the phone with them, they want you to tell them how everyone in the church is doing, what I preached about, how "this" hurts or "that", about the TV show they saw.... and somehow, in between this, I've found time to put in time studying and preparing for my Tuesday night study, my Wednesday night study and begun working on my sermon for Sunday. And it's just now noon on Tuesday.  
Lazy?  Sometimes I wish I could go back to a "regular" job!  
And the part people forget... somehow I am supposed to be a husband and father somewhere in between all this.  
Is it any wonder so many guys are leaving the ministry? I just read last week where  60% of those starting out in the ministry this year will leave the ministry in less than 5 years.  It hardly seems worth it when not only are we literally taking years off our lives to do the work of ministry, but we are attacked on every hand while doing it. 
Yeah... we're all just lazy.


Anonymous said...

See, you should have come out to California Pastor.

Michelle Wetnight said...

This attitude toward Shepherds HONKS ME OFF!!! You just mentioned stuff that has happened since Sunday. Folks don't get it!!! I am passionate about this!! We get phone calls here asking for Pastors cell phone number....and I WILL NOT give it out! (Tony is one of his councilmen). I am for ANYTHING that will give my pastors a break...or a refreshing. He has people that almost stand between him and "folks" before services so that he can stay focused to bring the word of God. I pray you also have that in place!! UGH people are ridiculous!!! Ok....I'm done now...have a good afternoon!