By Ron Cook

Ron and his wife Rodetta have been married for 41 years. They have actively served the Lord together in ministry during the entire time and are co-founders of Care for Pastors. Ron ministers to hundreds of pastors annually through mentorship, counseling, and by phone. He has been a Pastor for 40 years and understands the stress of ministry, and wants to share his longevity in ministry with other pastors and help them finish well.

    Joy or Burden

    Wednesday, July 09, 2014

    Hebrews 13:17 “Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden for that would be of no advantage to you.”

    When your Pastor thinks of you do his thoughts bring him “joy” or are those thoughts “a burden?” The very nature of what we as pastors do, is often a burden. We deal with life tragedies, family crisis, death, financial issues etc. Those life “burdens” are not what I’m talking about. I am talking about “stuff” that makes absolutely no difference what so ever in the building of God’s Kingdom. For example, not long ago I received a call from a local Pastor who after a morning service was approached by a church leader who was very distressed with the service. His distress wasn’t about the message; his distress wasn’t even because of the music. This man was very upset that a member of the praise team wore, are you ready for this, sandals. The Pastor explained to the man that the woman was pregnant and that sandals were the only shoes she could wear. Do you think this explanation satisfied? Surely this explanation satisfied the gentleman. Not hardly. At the next Elder’s meeting the man insisted that the church make a policy that no one be allowed to wear sandals on the platform. Now you decide, is this leader a “joy” or a burden” to his Pastor?

    Some of you are thinking this is an extreme case. I wish that it were. But the more pastors I talk to with Care for Pastors, the more I realize that our pastors are burdened with things that are absolutely ridiculous. Burdens that are causing many of God’s servants to say, “Enough already, I don’t need this, I can’t take anymore so I quit.”

    I wonder what explanation will be offered at the Judgment Seat of Christ from those individuals who placed unnecessary burdens on God’s servants? Burdens that they felt were so important like the style of music, what color the carpets should be. I could go on, but you get the picture. But wait, there will be no explanations offered at the Judgment Seat of Christ, we will only receive what we are due (II Corinthians 5:10).

    Would you honestly ask this question, “Am I an unnecessary burden or a source of joy to my Pastor?”

    I would be interested to hear your thoughts

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