The Wildest Criticisms of Pastors

Wednesday the topic of our Men’s Bible Study was on rejection. Zephaniah made the point that God delights in accepting rejects and outcasts. The opening illustration of the devotion [StandFirm] recounted the adverse effects of criticism and rejection.

Everyone, including pastors, have heard from those who are quick to critique.

I recently listened to a podcast from Thom Rainer, and the group chatted on the topic of pastoral criticisms. Part of the discussion centered on “The Wildest Criticisms of Pastors.” It was a survey conducted by ChurchAnswers.Com.

Here are the top 10 results

  1. “You should not wear a pink shirt to the pulpit.”
  2. “Pastors are not allowed to use hand-held mics.”
  3. “You cannot preach with power unless you wear a flag lapel pin.”
  4. “There are too many new Christians in our church.”
  5. “You don’t trust God since you go to board meetings.”
  6. “The Holy Spirit cannot use you if you plan your sermons ahead of time.”
  7. “You are lazy since we sang consecutive hymns from the hymnal.”
  8. “A pastor should not have a dog as pet.”
  9. “Your wife should work no more than 15 hours a week outside the home.”
  10. “Your wife should not be pregnant.”

Reading these gave me a good chuckle. I hope they did you as well. However, I have become even more mindful of the effect my words have on others. The gift of criticism and critique is not a spiritual gift. In fact, the Bible encourages using words that uplift, encourage and edify instead. (I Thessalonians 5:11)

I confess, sometimes I do better at edifying than at other times. It’s just one more piece of evidence that I am not perfect and God is still working with me.

I believe this is true for all of us, even the critic, don’t you?

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