Pastors know that church conflict is coming. Knowing when it's apt to come is a different matter and one that pastors are wise to be alert to.
Pastors have learned not to be discouraged the week after Christmas or the week after Easter. Those Sundays are traditionally the lowest in attendance. Coming as they do immediately after high points in the church year, the unprepared pastor sets himself up for despair if he doesn't recognize the pattern.
In the same way, pastors are better prepared for church conflict if they know when it's more likely to come. Certainly, pastors know that church conflict is coming—it has been part of the church since day one. Knowing when it's apt to come is a different matter and one that pastors are wise to be alert to.
"For everything there is a season," intoned the author of Ecclesiastes. He didn't mention it in his list, but he could have included church conflict. In my work with churches, I seem to get more calls for help during ten particular times ...1