When is it OK to walk away?

by Paul
(Midwest)

I came to my current church five years ago. I had left pastoral ministry for good, or so I thought, after a very frustrating pastorate in another state. I spent a year working on my M.A. and doing pulpit supply, among other things. But one of the churches where I preached kept calling me back, and I ended up taking the pastorate. Now I am at that place again: ministry has become drudgery.

The church is doing OK. Although there are plenty of challenges, there are no scandals or major problems. I'm too young to retire, but I can't imagine doing this for another 10 years or so. I get so tired of the church "business". I love the Lord and still want to serve him, but the local church is such a drag on my spirit. I just want to walk away.

Does God ever say, "It's OK, son. I'll let you go do something else?" Or do pastors always have to suck it up and keep going? Ministry has changed so much in my almost-40 year career. I feel like someone younger needs to take over from here.

Anyone have any thoughts?

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Never Satisfied
by: PreacherMike

I was called to the ministry when I was 16 years old I wall eagles walked away from that calling two years later. During my time away from ministry I had many of jobs/careers teacher delivery driver truck driver. God blessed me in those times but the only time that I felt satisfied was when I was helping out with the church. Now at 33 I am in Seminary and directing a youth that had been burned by youth pastor over and over and over again. I am having a hard time getting them to commit. It would be easier for me to walk away but ministry is not about the ones who are called to lead it is about the congregation they are leading. Jesus looked out at the crowd and his heart broke. He turned to his disciple and said the harvest is plentiful but the laborers are few.

You said you left the pastorate but then accepted this pastor position. It sounds like when you tried to leave God pulled you back in. I don't believe God ends our call.

I believe it's OK to walk away
by: Anonymous

Well I truly believe that if Lord has called us to be His ministers we must obey his calling wherever we go. You have to decide for yourself.

This might be a wrong church for you. If people don't support you and sabotage all your initiatives let them be. Even Jesus said "Leave them alone since they are blind leaders who lead blind people". It is not by any means your failure. But if you see that flock is creative, positive and supportive (although not always endorse your plans and ideas) and you feel like Holy Spirit can use you in this church then stay. You need to understand for yourself.

let the members help in doing the work of the ministry
by: Anonymous

I am not sure how you do things in your church but one thing is certain, when the church becomes aggressive in reaching the lost at all cost.. then drudgery will have no place in the ministry. again, this is no judgment at all but i believe as God-given leaders, we need to make the people in the church become more active... here in the Philippines we have different activities that keep the church's feet burning... everyone is doing something and not the paid workers only.. mostly, we only supervise but the people do the work and yes, we all love it.. and feel more ready in view of Christ's coming...

praying for God's leading in your church....

Sincerely,
Janish A. Laoagan

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