The current failure falls to me

I cannot state enough times or emphatically enough how much I am blown away with Jeremiah being the reading in the Daily Office at the time we are in culturally. These reminders are stark. I am also reminded of my own struggle as a pastor.

“Woe to the shepherds who are destroying and scattering the sheep of my pasture!” declares the Lord. Therefore this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says to the shepherds who tend my people: “Because you have scattered my flock and driven them away and have not bestowed care on them, I will bestow punishment on you for the evil you have done,” declares the Lord. “I myself will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the countries where I have driven them and will bring them back to their pasture, where they will be fruitful and increase in number. I will place shepherds over them who will tend them, and they will no longer be afraid or terrified, nor will any be missing,” declares the Lord. (Jer. 23:1-4, NIV)

I then noticed a personal note I had put into my Bible software program and I was glad I had dated it. I remember precisely the struggle I was in… and I was brutally honest. This I share from a very personal struggle in a time that led to the deep change on my journey to the place where I now find myself.

I wrote:

I am not a good shepherd. I’m not a good leader. I’m not a good… ANYTHING. 

I see “leaders” destroying the American church… but what am I? I’m an ego-driven, pride-inflated guy who wants attention. I can’t pastor. I can’t shepherd.

I’ve led the church to a place where I think the Lord wants, but I’m so dissatisfied at this point. I have some deeper longing… but I don’t know if it’s selfishness or something the LORD actually wants. 

But we need SHEPHERDS in the American church again! We need those who have a heart to lead people to quiet waters and allow them to hear the voice of the Lord. I long to do this. I’m not doing it very well, though. 

I am thankful I wrote that note and dated it. It is a reminder of the faithfulness of God… and of his dealing with the American church that is still happening.

rock formation
Photo Credit: Camille Evans, Unsplash

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