Dec 18, 2010

The Art of Pastoring: Church Conflict by William Martin

I was given a book by a pastor friend as a gift. I was encouraged to read a chapter of this book every day. I have been doing that. I readily admit that I find most of what is written on these pages a direct challenge to things I believe about the church and leadership, I have still been reading it precisely because I have needed this kind of thinking to balance most of what I regularly read.

The book is called "The Art of Pastoring: Contemplative Reflections" by William C. Martin.

I want to share a section on conflict that I find helpful:

By its very nature
the church will contain conflict.
Not everyone will appreciate or value
the work of the wise pastor.
Some will choose to see him as the enemy:
someone to be challenged, criticized,
and defeated.
Do not subscribe to the illusion inherent
in such conflict.
If you try to impose your will by the force 
of your winning personality,
or clever arguments,
or worse, the righteousness of your cause,
you will reap the whirlwind.
Give the gift that is yours to give,
then withdraw from the conflict.
Your church will always be beyond
your ability to control.
The opinion of others will forever lie
outside of your capacity to change.
Because you love your own soul, 
are content with your own soul,
and accept your own soul,
you have no need to defend or to defeat.

1 comment:

Deborah Hollifield said...

Very nice - and it seems to be very true
Merry Christmas!