So many church members (and ex church members) have become the walking wounded, not because they weren’t willing to serve, but because when they volunteered they were turned into virtual slaves by domineering, control freak pastors who abused biblical terms like servanthood and obedience to give them cover for their own control issues, abusing their position and overstepping their authority.
The result? Domineering pastors and burnt out members.
3. The members act like stockholders and treat the pastoral staff like employees
This is most evident in churches with a congregational form of government.
That form of church governing isn’t wrong (the church I pastor requires congregational approval for big decisions), but when it’s abused – as any good thing can be – the church members become more like passive investors demanding a return for their money.
Committee membership becomes more important than actual servanthood, pastors are afraid to take a potentially unpopular stand, and actual ministry grinds to a halt under the heavy hand of procedures and pettiness.
The result? Controlling members and neutered pastors.
Where does Jesus fit in our business models?
Perhaps the biggest problem with these three skewed visions of the church is how we treat (or ignore) Jesus.
If anyone in the church is acting like a boss, they’re crowding out the place where Jesus should be Lord. And when church members act like customers, they’re missing out on the extraordinary joy of serving Jesus.
Businesses have employees and customers.
The church has family members.
Businesses have bosses.
The church has a Lord. A head. A savior. And a king.
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