Agree or Disagree: You should stay at a church that has bad leadership


Agree or Disagree: You should stay at a church that has bad leadership

 

Have you ever been a part of a church community where you had an issue with leadership? You may not hasve been sure what the issue is, but you are not happy with leadership.

 

Maybe over a dinner or a coffee, you discussed this issue or issues with someone. Based on that discussion and maybe some other issues, you felt it best to leave the church. Some might argue you should “stick it out” and “Trust the Lord.” But you decided to leave.

 

Well, if you asked John Bevere if you should leave because of “Bad Leadership”, then he would say no. John Bevere is a well known speaker  and author in Christian circles. He is well respected by many as well  He gives his reasons in this article I linked. Here’s an interesting section of the article.

At the initial writing of this, I had been a member of only two churches in two different states in the past 14 years. I have had more than two—in fact, numerous—opportunities to become offended with the leadership over me (most of which, I might add, stemmed from my own fault or immaturity). I had the chance to become critical and judgmental with leadership, but leaving was not the answer. In the midst of a very trying circumstance, one day the Lord spoke to me through a Scripture verse and said, “This is the way I want you to leave a church: ‘For you shall go out with joy, and be led out with peace'” (Is. 55:12).

Most do not leave this way. They think churches are like cafeterias; they can pick and choose what they like! They feel the freedom to stay as long as there are no problems. But this does not agree at all with what the Bible teaches. You are not the one who chooses where you go to church. God does! The Bible does not say, “God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as they please.” Rather it says, “But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased” (1 Cor. 12:18, emphasis added).

I know many people, including myself, that have been “burnt” by church leadership. The experience has changed and impacted their spirituality. Some have left never to return to church again. For many years, there have been too many stories like these to count.

So when I read a statement like,  You are not the one who chooses where you go to church. God does! The Bible does not say, “God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as they please.” Rather it says, “But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased” (1 Cor. 12:18, emphasis added).

Personally, I get concerned.

First, God does not force or tell anyone to go to a church. Many have felt “led” to go to a church. And they have felt like that church was a fit for whatever reason that is. But, you get to make the decision on when and where you go to church.

Second, it seems to me that people want to be in a place and a community that supports them where they are at. A fit for where they are right now. Or, if they have a family, where the family is. If they feel that support and leadership is lacking, which by the way does not only includes Pastors, then it is important that they find that place that they will be.

I believe in loyalty and admire it, however being spiritually and emotionally healthy is important.

 

What do you think?  Would you stay in a place that has “Bad Leadership”.

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2 responses to “Agree or Disagree: You should stay at a church that has bad leadership

  1. Go! Run while you can get out aliiiiiive!

    On a serious note, though. Leadership shouldn’t be the sole reason for leaving. The direction the leader is leading that church, however, is a legitimate reason. If you can see that things will be heading in a bad way and stay, that’s on you. And more often than not, the leader will lead the church in a direction they feel strongly about, so it is important that you can get behind that direction, whether or not you always agree with the leader.

  2. And that’s one reason (okay two) why I am not a fan of Bevere’s teaching: The misapplication of isolated verses to suit his ideas.
    That 1Cor. 12:18 verse he quotes has nothing to do with whether it’s okay to leave your local church if the leadership sucks. Paul was describing the diversity of giftedness within the Body of Christ because people were creating a ranking system and thinking only one way to serve was best. A discussion of gifts =/= whether it is okay to leave a church. (My second peeve is that he seems to promote a rigid top-down hierarchy in the church with a few self-described apostles being at the top of the pile. Or the churches that operate that way like his stuff. It could be a bit of both.)

    I think a broad theme in the Bible is that everyone should follow the call of God in their life no matter what. If that means being a light in a dark church or if it means breaking ties to a group that is preventing you from doing and being what you are meant to is a question that will differ for each situation. Like Peter says in the book of Acts (several times) ultimately it’s God we obey not any human authority – whether Christian or not.
    And I won’t even get started on the assumption that we have to have “A Leader” to direct the church… 😉

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