📄 I have heard Pastors say, “And don’t send me any emails on this.” It seems like a number of Pastors have their own agenda and we are going to get the full dose of their teachings whether a congregation needs it or not. Of course, that is not all bad because good Pastors want to give us the foundation for following Jesus Christ. Pastors have been prepared through their training and researching the word, hopefully every week.
But I was sitting in Church this Sunday thinking, wouldn’t it be great if Pastors took requests? Yet, I remember another Pastor say, “I will not survey my members, because I know what is best for them.” I assume he thinks he is “too professional.” Too many Pastors think they are above their flock.
What’s my point? Everyone has something bothering or hurting them. One entrepreneur told me, “A good church is a hospital for hurting people to get healing.” I think there is some truth in his thinking, yet too many Pastors are playing “Father knows best.” Don’t get me wrong, I love to hear deep interpretations of Matthew, Mark, Ephesians, Roman, etc. Those can be convicting messages and inspire my walk to go deeper with Him.
But a number of people are still looking for a job, questioning what has the Lord got to do with their business or work or boss. Certainly others are saying, How do I get out of debt, sell my house in a tough economy, or witness to my neighbor on those subjects? Or how do I stop drinking or taking drugs or rid myself of other bad habits?
Many churches are dealing with the question of salvation and how the word relates to me personally and my family, but not the practical applications. At our recent Pastors conference, we surveyed nearly one hundred Entrepreneurs on what they want from their church teaching. Here is the top ten from 30 broad subject choices…
- Knowing my calling and gifts
- Difference between Christianity and Islam
- Why Marriages Fail
- Overcoming trials
- Starting a business God’s Way
- How to witness at work
- Why and how evil impacts good people
- How the Founders used the Bible
- The 7 Sins of the heart
- How to use the Sword of the Spirit
Should pastors take requests from their congregation? I don’t think it’s crazy to post a bulletin board or suggestion box in the church lobby for questions or subjects the members would like to find answers to. Isn’t that the purpose of a church, like any organization, to serve the needs of its customers or supporters?
The Lord is at work in our lives and circumstances all the time, 24-7, so He has practical answers and resources for our needs. One Pastor said, “Pastors are not the Church. The Church is the body of Church, so they need to lead and use the resources of the church to help people… share from the platform, giving testimony or even more, interview experts for their flock … if they don’t have the practical answers.” In my judgment, this is where the church lacks relevance for non-believers.
God will honor us when we take risks to serve our people and get out of the Church box we have put ourselves in for too long.