Is your Pastor a Goat-Herder? Now I know that some of you are going to get offended with me… Please don’t. “The truth that hurts us the most is the most truest of them all.”(jcr) You know what I’m talking about…
A pastor-friend once told me that his church president said that he was “nobody’s dumb sheep” and that he had “a will of his own.” The pastor answered: “Well now, are you not even a Jesus-sheep?” The man reacted with a jolt, “…well of course I’m a sheep’a Jesus!” The Pastor responded: “Before you said you were no one’s sheep. Now you say you’re a ‘sheep’a Jesus.’ Boy, are you dumb?”
I raised a few goats during my teenage years in Puerto Rico. We didn’t have a lot of land, so I would have to lead dad’s goats to greener pastures. But in order to do this I would have to tie ropes around their heads lest they resisted being led to greener pastures. Sometimes the only way to get them moving behind you is to lead them with a carrot, because otherwise they normally don’t follow the calling out of their names.
They must be driven. Goats will not cooperate with the gentle call of a shepherd. Wisdom dictates that they must be allowed to run almost wildly ahead, while the shepherd’s rope choke them whenever they run off too far. A shepherd’s stick keeps the goat in line. The goats run ahead and think they’re in charge, until the shepherd’s cord reminds them to obey God and respect the Pastoral Office.
The Shepherd leads either from behind or from the front. Either way, he will lead. If you cannot follow your Shepherd while he gently walks ahead of you, then you are a goat. You must be driven. And he will. Gently, but firm.
But if your good, orthodox, and godly Pastor desires to move towards a certain direction within reason, why then resist him? It is the responsibility of the disciples of a teacher to carry out the teachings and mission of their shepherd.
Is your Pastor a Chaplain? Chaplains take care of people’s needs for spiritual comfort. A Chaplain is like a generic figure who is supposed to have knowledge about most religions, and serve as a means of religious comfort even to those outside of his Faith.
A Pastor-Teacher is the leader of a learning community that seeks to understand the will of their Creator so that by their devotional service, God might be pleased. The Pastor is a living example of what the preached word describes. Pastors are the Fathers or Elders of the Christian Community. As such, they must be respected, at least as a Father figure.
Christianity is a disciplic religion. Hearers choose their Teachers, but Teachers choose their disciples. The hearers hear. The disciples listen and do.–jcr
If you find yourself oftentimes at war with your Pastor… or resisting him on every issue. Then perhaps you’re a goat.