6 Ways a Fictional Church May Wreck Your Ministry

Jeff Robinson | June 21, 2016


His words rang in my ears for days and triggered more than a few nights of nocturnal unrest.

What were you expecting in the pastorate? You’re not in seminary anymore, and this church isn’t filled with your seminary buddies. You’re in the real world now, son.

I’d been on the job exactly five days when a man who’d been in ministry for five decades struck down my beautiful and peaceful—and yes, fictional—church with the effect of an F-5 twister.

I’m not certain what my expectations for ministry were as a rookie pastor. But it didn’t take me long to realize that, prior to arriving on the battleground known as the local church, I had unwittingly constructed in my mind a church that was nothing like the congregation who now called me “Pastor Jeff.” And I suspect I’m not alone.

Poison Ivy of Expectations

I had built a ministerial Shire that doesn’t exist in this fallen world. It was long on success, as some who analyze churches reckon success, but it was decidedly slim on tribulation, anxiety, and pain. It was a church who loved everything I “brought to the table.” It was populated by those who delighted in my preaching, my family, even my personality. I simply showed up, preached, and watched it…


To read the rest of this article, visit https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/6-ways-a-fictional-church-may-wreck-your-ministry.