Visiting Churches

Reflecting on Church #43: Is Your Pastor on a Pedestal?

Celebrate Your Minister

With our journey of visiting fifty-two churches over, I can reflect more on the complete experience. Today, I’ll add to my thoughts about Church #43.

This congregation received us warmly and embraced our presence. They exuded a sense of family, just as true church should be. I felt a peace. I felt at home. As a community, they drew me in.

52 Churches: A Yearlong Journey Encountering God, His Church, and Our Common Faith

Although their service style was not what I’m comfortable with, these are good folks and part of me wants to join them.

However, my key observation was their excitement over their new leader, who will officially arrive in two weeks. The church’s enthusiasm was palpable. It was contagious and soon I joined in their anticipation.

I wanted to come back in a few weeks to meet her.

However, I’m concerned over the height of their anticipation. Surely, no person can live up to that and meet everyone’s wishes. When we put a pastor on a pedestal, we form unrealistic expectations for our spiritual leader.

As with all people, inevitably our ministers will one day disappoint us. And the higher the pedestal, the greater the disappointment.

I pray that the potential leadership before them will successfully emerge and not be thwarted as the newness of their minister’s arrival wears off.

[See my reflections about Church #42 and Church #44 or start with Church #1.]

My wife and I visited a different Christian Church every Sunday for a year. This is our story. Get your copy of 52 Churches today, available in ebook, paperback, hardcover, and audiobook.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

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