Pondering on the 99+1 deal again #outlawpreachers

14 Sep

I’m a pain in folks sides, being I tended to argue for the 1, not the 99… others always kept saying, what about the 99. We need to be there for them, if we leave the 99 in search of the 1, what will they do… they could stumble, or worse. I wrote about this deal a couple years ago with the inverted parable of the lost sheep Here is an opening snippet.

When a shepherd has a hundred sheep, and one wanders off, he lets it go to the world, such that he can focus on the care and feeding of the remaining 99, lest they feel any discomfort or uneasyness with their shephard being gone for a bit.

The subject came up again this AM, when I visited MMI. 

 

From @ToddRhoades http://mondaymorninginsight.com/blog/post/how_do_you_as_a_pastor_deal_with_the_really_needy_people/

Here’s the harsh reality:  Every church (EVERY CHURCH) has a small group of really needy people that will dominate your time, energy, schedule, and agenda if you let them. We all have those types of people. As soon as I mentioned the topic, their pictures were emblazened on your mind. The question is… how do you deal with them? It’s hard not to give them time; but too much time, like Perry says, can drive you to a place of insanity.

Todds post was due to the following attributed to Perry Noble, discussed at http://www.pajamapages.com/?p=2921 where pretty much it ends up being a bash and defend Perry Noble, bash and defend Megachurches, etc.

 

Too many pastors … let the expectations and demands of needy, clingy church people (notice I didn’t say Christians) DRIVE them to a place of insanity.

Here is the deal…. Todd is right, and Perry is right, to deny that such exists is putting ones head in the sand, and/or totally ignoring the needs of ones flock.

The issue, is not whether or not such folks exist, but more so, what is an appropriate response. Certainly Jesus is pretty clear about tending to the 1, rather than the 99… but then some would suggest, hey the 1 is saved, so we can blow them off. Others might suggest, well the structure and order of the church is more important, so we can blow them off. Yet others might suggest, my clergy work and home life is more important, so we can blow them off. The problem is, I never saw any wiggle room in Jesus words such that we can blow folks off.

I think the problem is individualistic theology, a failure to embrace the priesthood/gifts of all believers, and a tendency of the congregation to dump all the problems on the pastor, and for the pastor to accept all the problems.. I wrote about this before in saying no to God.

Individualistic theology has hosed over many a fine brother or sister in Christ, its wrong thinking…. The primary difficulty of the individualistic approach, is one doesnt see all of the capabilities, gifts, skills, and help available. Even Paul traveled with a group… The second issue is a failure to make the call early on that problems exist, and that more help is needed. Acts 6, where a set of dudes were chosen to serve the widows is a prime example of this. It shows not only the problem of being spread too thin, but utilizing the resources at hand, and the power of a group… they didnt just dump the problem on one guy, and say here you go.

**************************some random notes****************************

Some situations, esp those requiring confidentiallity can not be delegated, nor handled in a distributed fashion

Many situations may work very well in a distributed fashion, CPE as part of Chaplain education presents an interesting model

Some situations are far beyond the scope of a pastor, but such does not preclude the pastor assisting with direction to the appropriate resources within the community of faith. Or if such doesnt exist, outside of it.

No where have I ever found justification for a pastor being completely hands off

No where have I ever found justification for a pastor or church to direct the one lost sheep to Caesar and walk away

Zech 11:15 Then the LORD said to me, “Take again the equipment of a foolish shepherd. 16For I am going to raise up a shepherd over the land who will not care for the lost, or seek the young, or heal the injured, or feed the healthy, but will eat the meat of the choice sheep, tearing off their hoofs. (interesting verse #16 is… context is interesting too)

 

 

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