Whose People Are We Anyway?
Gifted evangelists absolutely blow pastors out of the water with their gifting and charisma. Thus, they scare pastors. Pastors don’t know what to do with an evangelist unless said evangelist is just ‘passing on through.’
Evangelists are generally not very welcomed as a part of a local church for long for obvious reasons. When a ’10+’ communicator is present next to the week-in, week-out guy, it is difficult, as they say, to follow that act.
There is no act, obviously. But human pettiness, jealousy rears its head invariably around gifted evangelists.
Such a person is a huge threat, unfortunately, to maintenance-minded pastors who see those present as ‘their’ people.
Observation: With every church I have launched, the message has come through loud and clear from nearly every pastor locally that my presence was ‘interesting’ (how can a move to a city be ‘interesting’?). They appreciated my ‘enthusiasm’ but there were already plenty of churches in the city.
Translation: ‘This is my city / my part of the city / my geography… If I hear of one person leaving to attend your place – well, you don’t want to know what will happen.’
Some reading this, honestly, have been on both the receiving then oddly, the giving end of such communications.
When first in a city that is far underserved by existing churches, you were clearly not welcomed (understandable) – but when you got up and running did you begin to send the exact messages to new church launchers?
To quote Tom Cruise, who offered us one of the great lines in live TV history when on The Today Show, “Matt (Lauer), you don’t want to take me on regarding this issue. This has to do with psychology. I know a lot about psychology. I have studied psychology.”
Good ‘ol Tom was right on to bring that point up. After all, he eventually did get a certificate of graduation from high school. Also, he regularly reads Psychology Today magazine and all of L. Ron Hubbard’s sci-fi novels.
Point: In our brokenness, we cannot speak out of one side of our mouth today, and the other side a bit later and continue to think we have integrity. Without integrity we have nothing.
Such behavior clarifies we are in need of deep healing from God.
Without this healing, we will continue to see a drip of evangelism instead of the flow of the river Jesus has in mind.