9 April 2018

Being Seen but not Known (Friendship in MInistry)

Thought & Themes: Seen but not Known
A pastor can seem like he’s known by many — he reveals a bit of himself each week to hundreds or thousands — while he’s really known by few. Revelations of himself during sermons are often like revelations over social media: Controlled vulnerability that keeps people at a distance either through over- or under-sharing.”
Elliott Grudem (Pastors Need Friends Too)
This quote has to be one of the most accurate representations of ministry challenges that I’ve heard to date. It is a difficult but common reality that many clergy and their families face in ministry, often telling me “they think they know me but they don’t know the real, let-my-hair-down me!” 
Now, I love sermon illustrations! Stories of the impact of God’s word in everyday life are a particular favourite, but this quote challenged me to think a bit differently about how clergy and their families might be seen but not known.

Friendship can be a tough gig in ministry. If as Elliott suggests it ought to be
viewed "not as a luxury, but a necessity”, how do you maintain being yourself and being a counsellor, pastor and mentor?

If sermons illustrations are an example of being seen and appreciated, but not really known, how do you bridge the gap between ministry and friendship in such a way that nourishes you and protects your ministry? 

~ Rachel 
"Pastors need real, intimate, vulnerable friendships, if they are going to last in ministry." Read Elliott's full article here

Thought & Themes is a monthly discussion series about clergy family life and ministry.
February: Just Like Everyone Else, Right?!
January: Rhythms of Ministry

www.australianclergyfamilies.com -- journeying together with clergy families

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