WILL THE REAL PASTOR PLEASE STAND UP?


I found this post on Fat Beggars School of Prophets.  It was written seven days ago by Agent X.  This one will make you think!

Sometimes we believe that just because we have been in church our whole lives (because we were brought up in a Christian home), OR given our lives to Christ at an early age and tried to do His will, OR have a title such as Deacon, Elder, Assistant  Pastor, or even Pastor…does NOT mean we are sanctified (fit for use) in the eyes of Almighty God!  God looks at our hearts…He searches the depths within…sees the motives we have.  GOD doesn’t care what your title is!  If He did, he would have had Peter, whom He later built His Church upon, come to the open tomb and tell the message of His resurection instead of the known prostitue, Mary Magdalene!

Remember this...OUR ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS; and I will go on to say that OUR ACTIONS BEAR MORE WEIGHT WITH GOD THAN  OUR TITLES DO!  Keep that in mind as you read the following… Then ask yourself…where do you stand? -anita

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At 10 O’clock in the evening on a recent Tuesday night as a cool front rolled in, near a dumpster in an alley behind a church in the downtown district, a group of homeless people gathered behind the wind break of the back wall of the sanctuary.  One of them was a middle-aged woman whose only protection from the cold was a light jacket, under which she shivered as she huddled close to the wall of the church.  We’ll call her “Angel” so as to hide identities in an effort to protect the innocent and the guilty.

There were two ministers in that town, both of them praying for “Angel” at just that moment.  One of them was a fellow homeless man who got out of the hospital earlier that day.  The nurse who discharged him showed pity and sent him out with a blanket she secured from the linen closet.  At first, he thought about how he might trade the blanket for a pack of cigarettes.  But then he thought more of it as night fell.  This homeless man knew “Angel” would be cold, and he knew where she likely would claim a spot for the night – shelter behind a locked up church.  He would begin the search for her and take a lengthy path to find her if necessary.

The other minister was the pastor of the church behind which “Angel” lay shivering.  A man who from the time he was 14 years old, devoted himself to being a church leader.  It just so happened he was reading a copy of When Helping Hurts, which he piously kept by his night stand.  He had met “Angel” earlier that day, and she had made an impression on him.  He thought she reminded him of his own mother.  But as he prayed, he considered how that if he helped “Angel”, he would need to do so wisely, so as not to enable her broken lifestyle.  Thus he contented himself with the thought that he would allow her in to pray in the morning and get a cup of coffee then, but certainly would not open his family’s door to her and let her sleep in the guest room.  He slept very snug that night in his bed.

Meanwhile, the homeless man leaving the hospital walked two and a half miles in the blowing wind at 10 O’clock at night to find “Angel” and give her his blanket.  When he found her, she was so grateful for his kindness that she devoted herself to his friendship which would last into the Age to Come.

Now, I must ask:  Which minister was a deacon of the church?  Which minister was the pastor???

Agent X

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

One thought on “WILL THE REAL PASTOR PLEASE STAND UP?

  1. Yay! I am glad to see this post make the circuit…

    I was reading the parable of the father with the two boys and he gave them a task. The one said yes, but then didn’t do it. The other said no, but then he did it. I thought I would rework that parable into this post. Not sure I am particularly good at that, but it seemed like an artist painting the masters after them. Perhaps if we do it a lot, we get better at it. I hope.

    But then I also recalled Pastor Drake.

    I really don’t know Pastor Drake at all. I don’t think he is famous – certainly not in any circles I run in. But I found a story about him when I first entered Bible School. I was giving a speech in speech class, persuading Christians to sacrifice themselves. I used a scoreboard for a visual aid and told martyr stories. At the end of each martyr story, I added up the new score. It started like this: Lions 1/Christians 0… Lions 2/Christians 0 … Lions 3/Christians 0… and so on…

    I wrapped up with the modern tale of Pastor Drake who is our contemporary, and a story about him back in the 90’s. He was in his study at the church office alone in the building one evening when there came a knock at the door. It was a homeless man seeking some food or shelter. Whatever it was, it definitely was a tall order and not something Drake was accustomed to at all. Drake hardly hesitated in shewing the man off church property, and going back to work on his homily.

    But when he got back to his desk and began working on it, the very text he was preparing for his sermon began convicting him that he should not have turned the man away. At first he tried to brush off this conviction, then he began making excuses – good ones too – in his mind for what he had done. But the Word of God just would not relent. After about 15 minutes, Pastor Drake burst out in tears and repented. Now his soul in turmoil, he raced out the door looking for the homeless man he had sent away.

    Pastor Drake never found that man. But when he went back to work, he was changed and he pushed his church into some new changes with him. His church, which as I recall was located in Southern California, was situated in or near an industrial area, and vagrants were known to drift that part of town a lot. He opened his church to them and started a tent city on his church property, provided showers and food via the service of his whole church and thus attracted dozens of homeless people to live under his shepherd’s watch.

    But soon the city claimed he was breaking ordinance. They threatened to charge Pastor Drake with a crime, but gave him a chance to back off his new found ministry. Drake did not back off. Drake went to jail. And while in jail, he met a whole rung of humanity he had never known before.

    This happed in the 90’s. It is old news now. But when I researched in the library at school, this was the story, the only one I found at that time, about a Christian going to jail FOR his faith in the United States, and it impressed me deeply.

    This parable I offered here, though it makes the “pastor” look bad, is not intended to drag the pastor through the mud (though pastors don’t come out too clean in it), but to open the eyes of pastors and laity alike to the realities seething beneath the surface that we are not likely to see. And in that sense, I am honoring Pastor Drake (though until now, I did not mention his name). But of course the God Pastor Drake serves knows all this already – and more. And quite possibly sent an angel to Drakes door to begin with….

    Like

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