Part Deux of the 3 Deadly C’s of Today’s Church

So the next segment of this series is all about compassion, and where it fits into our lives and churches. Now, I know that compassion isn’t deadly, but the lack of it is, so that’s what I’ll be talking about. As I’m finishing up studying for this evening’s Bible study time with our youth, compassion is something that is irreplaceable in ministry as well as everyday life. Here’s my heart, try not to stab it, hehe.

Compassion is something that I struggle with in my life, both as a believer and as a husband and daddy. I sometimes have this thought that my kids (4,2,6m) should automatically know what’s right and wrong. I have this mindset that the youth I teach and counsel will listen to my “wisdom” from life experiences and avoid doing the things they are doing and walk away from destructive life decisions. Along with those perspectives, I also sometimes think that my amazing wife should just know what I am thinking and expecting without voicing anything. These expectations, when not met, very often create a mentality of no compassion inside my heart when things end up badly. Christ lived a life of compassion, He knew that people were sinners, knew that some would not come to know the saving knowledge of His existence and purpose, and that people would deny Him after they said they loved Him. How did He respond to these things? With grace, mercy, and incredible compassion. One of the key things in my life that I need to improve on is compassion, especially because Christ set the example and standard of compassion. People always pray for patience and things like that, but you can’t have patience without compassion. If you are compassionate with your kids, then the times they go crazy, your patience will be heightened and increased because you understand they are just kids. If I am compassionate with my youth at the church, then my ability to minister to them is increased because I remember that they are still learning, and that I didn’t really apply what I was taught at church until after I was out of high school. As for my wife, well, that’s always going to be a work in progress, especially because I’m usually the offender in that area, I often miss subtle and non-subtle hints, and I pay for them in the end.

As a minister, we are called to be compassionate to those in our congregation and to those in our community around us, irregardless of what they may have done, said, or thought about us. Paul writes about the requirements for ministers in his first letter to Timothy. Among the requirements for overseers(pastors), is the ability to be temperate, self-controlled, respectable. So many times we find ministers who don’t have those characteristics, I believe it is due to a lack of our ability to have compassion on others. Pride is another factor that I have seen that drives congregates away from churches. A pastor or youth minister who is constantly bragging about himself or his accomplishments stands a great chance as being labeled arrogant, and arrogance pushes people away from the church. Christ set the example of humility that we should follow, no matter our position in church, whether every Sunday morning attendees or lead pastor at a church of 900 members. If we are not able to think of ourselves as no better than those who come to be taught, we have no right to be doing the teaching. The very first requirement that Paul writes about in 1 Timothy 3, is that the overseer must be above reproach. Compassion is a necessary characteristic of ministers and followers of Christ, because it comes out of humility, which is a key characteristic of Christ. All that being said, I realize daily that I have a looong way to go to get where I need to be in terms of being an effective minister.

So, to commemorate some compassion I will be giving away a free copy of Shane and Shane’s newest album, called “The One You Need.” I will not lie when I tell you that this album has changed my mindset and perception of my role as a father, and when used in conjunction with the movie “Courageous,” the two will bring you to tears…not even joking.

So here are the rules to the game:

You will have the ability to gain 2 entries.

1) Comment on Part 1, 2, or 3 of the “3 Deadly C’s of Today’s Church” series and tell me what you think. (Part 3 will be posted next week.)

2) Post this link by copying and pasting the following text to your Facebook or Twitter account and then leaving a comment telling me that you have shared it: Behindthecross is giving away Shane & Shane’s new album, “The One You Need”. Check it out here! http://wp.me/p1KLvl-H

The deadline for the contest will be next Thursday(Nov.16th) at 11:59pm. The winner will be chosen on Friday by random.org and the winner will be posted on Saturday, the 18th. Comments will be numbered in the order that they are posted, beginning with Part 1 of the series, with the comments on Part 3, being the highest numbers.

I look forward to seeing who wins!

Thanks and God Bless!

Phillip

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3 Responses to Part Deux of the 3 Deadly C’s of Today’s Church

  1. James Oliver says:

    I think compassion is something that many of us struggle with on daily basis. I know I do. God certainly was compassionate on us! Go ahead and put my name on that CD!

  2. Monica Fielding says:

    You have a really great way of telling things in a way that makes sense. It is really refreshing to read something that is not riddled with large vocabulary words just to sound more intelligent or more “holy”. It is a precious gift and I thank you for sharing.

    I just wanted to add to your comments regarding how ministers should act (and I would argue all Christians). It also says in 1 Tim 3: “and he must have a good reputation with those outside the church…” When it comes to becoming more Christ-like, we all fall short (no one more so than myself). As such no one should be judgmental towards those “outside” the church (whether non-Christian or those who have fallen away). Like you mentioned, Christ came to show the ultimate example of humility. It is only through serving with that same attitude of humility that people will understand who Jesus is. 1 Cor. 13:1 – “If I speak with the tongues of man and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or clanging cymbal.” I know a lot of noisy gongs whose actions made me question my own desire to be a Christian. I pray that Me and all my faults can get out of the way so that Jesus and all His love can shine through. Thanks again for sharing!

  3. Amanda Blair says:

    I think I’ve always been a compassionate person. When bad things happen to other people, something inside me feels sorrow and a sense of wanting to help that person. I feel for them and their families and I always just say a little prayer for them which is all I can really do sometimes. Being compassionate for others is part of my personality I guess because I want to help people when they are hurting. I try to be there for my friends and family and to show them that God has them in the palm of His hand. I know God can fix anything and handle it all way better then I could if I were to try and handle it on my own. I like to show people that if they just give it all to God and not just part of it, then everything will begin to fall into place.

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