Don’t confuse your faith with your church.

I have used stories of my mom and advice I have received from her in many of my sermons. Being 6’4″ tall myself and my mom being 5’2″ I would almost always use my hand to indicate mom and how short she was. But her height was only one of her attributes. Mom is the reason I am a pastor today.

Since I began serving in churches first as a volunteer and later as an employee, I have seen and heard many things that were not uplifting. Jackie once told a friend that she liked church much better before she dated me and heard the inside stories.

Church work is messy. You risk ticking some people off no matter what decision you make. Even a simple change in worship time of 15 minutes will upset someone. But the issues are often much deeper. People we deal with in churches are broken people. We all are broken and come to the table of Christ with our own wounds.

Some people lash out in their pain, and it can be hard not to react to it when it happens. And even Pastors bring pain to the table.

Church life is messy. In their fear people make church life hard. And this is on top of everything that is day to day in a church. Funerals, hospital visits, members coming to talk about their life. A pastor must wear many hats. They truly do work more than an hour a week.

So back to mom.

Early in my church life there was a mess going on at the church I was at. Mom and I would talk almost daily and she could often tell simply by my tone how I was doing. During this time mom gave me the wisdom that made all the difference in my faith life. And that faith life led me to where I am today.

Don’t confuse your faith in God with your church.

Simple words from mom help me separate my faith in Jesus and the people in the church. I can accept hurt people and not let it question my faith.

Mom passed away last June. I miss her. I miss her council. Mom had many more words of wisdom. I will tell you more about them in other posts. Mom taught me to love everyone. Just like God does. And I do I love you all.

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