Monday, August 3, 2009

The System Of The Organized Church Is Flawed

The system as it exists for training pastors does not ensure that he is prepared for the office. A man can be catapulted right into the highest position where he has no accountability, and have many character "issues" unresolved, that would have been worked on if there were a system of accountability whereby a person is better trained for that office over a period of time.

A person can be listening to the Holy Spirit and be waiting on God, asking Him to show them if they are ready to be used by Him, and then move out as they are led, and thus allow God to work on their character over a period of time before moving out. But there are those who are all too eager to get into high positions because it validates them, and they lack genuine, authentic closeness to the Father, and the character that is essential to the position that they seek. These people do not listen and they do not wait, and the system of the church that exists is all too willing to promote them anyway.

This is a sad truth that I saw played out with my own father, who now in his late life is left with seemingly no relationship to God at a time in his life when it would seem most desperately needed. He lacks what he needs even for himself, yet he "shepherded" a whole flock. It is so pathetic.


Bike Bubba said...

Not a bad point. I dearly wish you were wrong, but there are thousands (millions?) of hirelings out there working to prove you right.

Seems that's why Paul's letters to Titus and Timothy make such a big deal out of character and not much out of skills.

Gabrielle Eden said...

Thanks, (oh man in a burka!) I just know that the Holy Spirit can teach us when we're ready if we listen to Him.

God has been preparing me and I know I'm still "green."

Anonymous said...

First of all, what a beautiful front page! I love all the humor and the pictures from nature, and the style of this blog. You are obviously a very creative woman.

I just want to disagree slightly with your complaint about "the organized church." It's true that in some circles, anybody who says he's hearing the word of God can declare himself a pastor and start developing a "ministry." He might have a lot of charisma and talk a good talk, but not really have the groundedness, humility, maturity or administrative skills to lead a congregation.

On the other hand, in some parts of the Christian church there is a system to help train pastors and help weed out those who are not meant for leadership. That is called seminary and ordination. The system isn't perfect (what human endeavor is?) but it is far better than the churches of the self-appointed pastors.

I would not attend a church led by someone who just suddenly declared himself/herself a minister without formal, prayerful study and without meeting the spiritual, educational & character qualifications of a denomination. I'd also never attend a church whose leadership was not democratic (pastor answers to the board; board is elected by the congregation). It's also important that finances are totally open and church budgets approved by an elected committee, not just the pastor and his/her cronies.

You seem like a genuinely happy person, and I hope you continue to be blessed!

Gabrielle Eden said...

Anon - you have made an excellent point, one which I didn't address when writing this. I also don't support the idea of self appointed ministers. I'm not talking about that here - I'm talking about people in ministry doing their side of the bargain by listening to the Holy Spirit and being "taught" by the Holy Spirit and not just being taught by a seminary.

I agree that the seminary system is good but in the case of my father, I have seen it go wrong. He has never had accountability in his life, something which he would have to have sought on his own, to keep himself in check.

It is so heartbreaking and has made shipwreck of the faith of his children.

You have to understand the seriousness of what I am talking about. The system you are referring to is good, but it is so flawed, and allows for immature people with a lot of character "problems" to be hiding behind the position we call "pastor."

Anonymous said...

What is the solution, do you think?

Gabrielle Eden said...

Hmmm, Anon - good question. I will try to answer.

We can't solve what people are doing on a corporate level - the huge collective of people who decide to do things a certain way.

We can do things individually - look for those who are listening to God and waiting on Him, and do likewise - seek to follow Christ as we know we are meant to - even if it means walking a lonely path, and pray - pray for change.