I’ve been watching recently as a number of pastors and leaders are either turning off comments on their blogs or responding to criticism about their ministries. Most make a simple point: “I’m too busy doing what God has called me to do to take the time to try and please everyone. It’s not going to happen, so my energies are best suited to doing what is producing Godly results.”
As an example, I saw an example yesterday of one woman critiquing a pastor named Mark Driscoll‘s ministry in Seattle. She even does it in a logical, reasoned way. But a member of Mark’s church made some interesting points in his defense in the blog’s comments. It shows that with any disagreement, there are two understandable sides.
See a few examples of pastors responding to critics here and here. This one here is good too.
At first, I thought their responses held some great wisdom. You’ve got to stay focused on the goal. But then I wondered…are they missing any valuable feedback by ignoring the people who disagree?
And yet, as the thoughts continued to churn, I came back to the first conclusion.
Here’s the deal: we NEED people around us who can speak truth into our lives and correct and guide us. But the best people to do that are people who understand the whole situation and have been there before. Listening to anyone who has an opinion on your job is like a marathon runner in the heat of a race stopping to listen to the hot dog vendor on the sidewalk.
Choose coaches. Choose them wisely. Submit to their authority. Then run with the understanding that you won’t please everyone. In the end, the lives that are most effective for Christ are the ones that are ran to please Him alone.