The Pastor’s Mess and the Rescue of Grace

Pastors, we’re still a bit of a mess. We’re all at times very poor examples of the truths we teach.

fai-13-dirty-hands-arentWe all have the dark ability to expound a passage that lauds God’s grace yet be a husband or father of ungrace in the car on the way home.

You can lead a men’s ministry discussion on the issue of biblical sexual purity and lust at the women in the grocery store on the way home.

You can teach about the self-sacrificing nature of love and be self-centered and unwilling to serve at home.

You and I can define biblical humility but be proud of what we know and what we’ve accomplished.

You and I have the ability to talk of what it means to invest our gifts and strengths in the work of the kingdom of God and then go home and waste countless hours in front of the flat screen.

We talk about the beauty of forgiveness yet harbor bitterness against families or leaders that have opposed us.

We are capable of talking about God’s ownership of every area of our lives and then masturbate in the bathroom before we go to bed.

We talk of the rest we have in God’s control and then anxiously work politically behind the scenes to ensure that we get our own way.

We talk of giving God the glory that is his due, and then we fudge the numbers to make our ministries look more successful in the eyes of others than they actually are.

We talk of trusting God’s provision but then get ourselves in debt by spending more than he has provided.

We teach people the rest that can be found when you get your identity vertically, but when the rubber meets the road in daily ministry, we care too much about what people think of us.

We can teach well what it looks like to be content, but we quickly grumble and complain when the going gets hard.

We talk about a heart for ministry, but when we get home all we want is to be left alone.

We are all capable of being self-righteous, proud, judgmental, controlling, easily angered, bitter, and demanding.

We sometimes act as if we’re entitled to our blessings.

We often forget how much we need everything we teach. We give evidence everyday that we are people in the middle of our own sanctification, that we still need the moment-by-moment rescue of grace.

Paul Tripp, Dangerous Calling


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