Jim was sharing the rousing success of his church. In three years he had turned a dissension-torn church in the middle of nowhere into a unified, booming success. When he arrived, barely enough people attended to support the church. Now they are talking about two services. The church has made major building improvements while putting money in the bank-in an area with 15 percent permanent unemployment! I could almost feel horns of envy sprouting from my head.
Envy's green eyes often glow in the ministry, but we don't often discuss it. Are we afraid to admit we look at what other church leaders have-and feel sorry they have it and we don't? It quickly leads to backbiting and gossip among church leaders.
As I left a conference on ministry in the eighties, a colleague fell into step beside me. He struck up a conversation about my former job as a staff member in a nearby church.
"I hear you relocated after a push from the church board, Chuck. I'm not surprised. From what I hear, Don was a very ...1