Experience, someone said, is the teacher of those who do not listen to their mentors. One of the most difficult parts of pastoring is watching people walk into a ditch even as they turn a deaf ear to your injunctions. Indeed leadership in any form will inevitably bring you into such situations. One of the follies of ignorance is the certainty of knowing when the contrary is obvious. It is also one of the dangers of pride and the unwillingness to be taught. It is better to humble oneself and receive guidance and correction than to obstinately pursue a path in our own wisdom that either leaves us worse than we began or stumbling along on crutches when we could be soaring like eagles.
That is what happens when we buy the lie that we are independent and should do our own thing and no one has the right to call us to order. In the corporate world we understand the value of mentoring, in our churches not. Pastors cajole rather than correct, they simper rather than speak out. The result is emotional deficiency, character problems and a generation of spiritually disabled persons who want to take the world for Jesus. God heals, He heals bodies, and He heals minds, He heals emotions and changes character. And He uses people, the presence and power of the Holy Spirit and prayer and the word; but He does it and we should let Him.
And He uses leaders, leaders who are not afraid to speak the truth, who fear God, who love the praise of God more than they love the praise of men. As we studied the local church this week I thought again that many people will choose a church for the music, the ambiance or because my friends are there. But when you join a church, you are giving the leadership permission to speak into your life, to encourage, cajole and correct, when there is need. And you need to know that they are capable and willing to do it. That is why we have the two epistles to the Corinthians, there was a lot to correct and the apostle did it. And if you have the good fortune to have godly leaders, know that it is so much better to allow yourself be nurtured by leaders who care than to be flayed and tamed by experience……..