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The Confession of a Church Politician.
Is it possible to do the right things for the wrong reasons? I believe it is. When it comes to my Christian service, if I am not careful my motives are less than charitable. Although I don’t always realize it, my motivation for my Christian service is often personal gain. Selfishness is a part of my DNA. Admittedly, my fallen Human nature is a problem for me at all times, but when my narcissistic ambitions target the things of God through my Christian service. Judgment becomes a certainty.
God opposes the proud. This means he becomes my adversary. (If that doesn’t make one shiver, nothing will). Fortunately, He is merciful; He knows how to bring me to repentance. The fear of God is recognizing that he sees me at all times. That He makes plans for my character development based on my actions and attitudes. I have seen the truth in the scripture that says “the steps of a righteous man are ordered by God.” Like a loving Father disciplining his children, He will not spare the rod for it spoils the child.
The Confession of a Church Politician
There is one aspect of my Christian experience that has brought me destruction rather than life; the need to compete for positions of leadership, that evil part of me that desires power. In the world, the struggle for power is expected, in some circles admired. But in the church it is sin.
Over the years, this sin has cost me friends, family, and countless sleepless nights. It bred in me resentment and bitterness and has on more than one occasion made me question my faith altogether.
In me, it manifested itself through a highly focused effort to impress those already in leadership, especially the pastor. I started by volunteering for all lower positions or "servant" type ministries. I attended every service and helped in every ministry. I gave more then I could afford and volunteered my time at the expense of my family. My goal was to literally become great in God's Kingdom. A super Christian. Sadly the greatness I wanted was motivated by selfish ambition, not the glory of God's kingdom. In short, my Christian service was not freely offered. Everything I did was to help me win favor and climb ladders.
In my endeavor to become great, I became dangerous. The positions I had earned went to my head and made me arrogant. I sometimes hurt people, who in turn, lashed out at me. I see now that I was like that Fig tree that Jesus cursed. People came to me expecting to receive fruit, but instead they found me fruit barren.
I went through a lot of churches. Over time, it would become clear that there was a problem. I know now that everyone except me saw my arrogance and my selfish ambition. Eventually the positions I had would be taken away from me. This made me bitter and resentful. Instead of looking inward, I would blame the Pastor or the Deacon or whoever. In my shame I moved on, dooming myself to start the terrible cycle all over again in another church.
The Moment Of Realization
I remember the day God saved me from myself, He opened my eyes showing me my folly, I will spare you the details they are unimpressive. What I want you to know is how my sin affected me physically and emotionally. How the consequence of my sin manifested itself in my attitude and my emotions. It wore me out, made me tired and bitter; ready to give up on church altogether.
Through a chain of God ordained events, He made me aware of my sin. As a result, I made a decision to stop competing, to stop campaigning and to simply attend church to learn and fellowship. I determined to become an average Christian, sincere and real. I threw away my “Politician suit” and my “Super” suit.
These days I purpose to be real not amazing. I give when I can and I don't if I can't, I volunteer when I can and don't if can't. I no longer kill myself trying to gain leadership's approval. I have developed a loathing for church politics. I tend to run from churches that are elder led or political in nature. They tend to breed church politicians and they resurrect my carnal desires for power and position.
Now don't get me wrong, there are times that I feel God empress on me to do a thing. To sacrifice of myself to accomplish a task that is important to Him. The difference is, I find joy in the doing and the stress of the project is bearable. He gives me the grace to complete it.
My Yoke Is Easy
Jesus said " come, my yoke is easy and my burden is light." It is true. I am so glad that He helped me understand the right motivation for service. I have learned to serve out of my love for God, not my duty to the church, or my desire to be great in the Kingdom of God.
I have come to understand that He is not a task master nor can I impress him by greats acts of service. He knows my limitations, he knows my failings and most of all, He too, loathes church politics.
Something to think about