HOW FEAR MOLDS OUR PERSONALITY AND CHARACTER
By Ken Blue
We may become so accustom to living with fear, we are unaware it exist. It becomes a way of life, and it molds our character and personality. Although most pastors will deny his fears, excuses and paralysis betray him.
There are several things pastors fear, and among them is the fear of failure. I’ve see many of these young men. They usually mask it with verbosity and an overabundance of confidence. Talk becomes a substitute for action, and appearance a substitute for leadership.
I remember attempting to help one of my grandchildren create a budget and get out of debt. After a few days of inaction on her part, I ask why the delay. She told me that she had failed at everything she did, so why should she take on another project certain to fail. Her previous failures, and her prophecies of the future put her in a straitjacket and kept her in bondage.
Leaders understand that you always fail more than you succeed, but they learn from their failures, and discover the more you try the more successes you will achieve. The homerun king always strikes out more than he hits. However, he also knows if he doesn’t swing the bat, very little will happen. Sad to say, many pastors are afraid to step up to the plate. They fear they will strike out. So, they play it safe and just stand there.
The second fear that paralyzes pastors is the fear of success. You might question this phobia, and be the last to acknowledge its existence, but it is very real. Many pastors fear church growth. Success would mean more responsibility and commitment. Growth would mean change, and others would receive some of the attention enjoyed by the pastor. New babies demand a sharing of the toys.
[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Fear can put you in a straitjacket and keep you in bondage.[/pullquote]
Success means that someone else may be able to do things better than the pastor, therefore many refuse to develop people or give important ministries to them. The pastor becomes the bottleneck to growth. You cannot succeed unless you change, and success forces the church to change.
A third fear is that of rejection. Some pastors are more concerned about what other pastors think of them than they are their own congregation. Once pastors form a structured “fellowship” there will always be a battle for leadership. Privileges and accolades will be granted or withheld by the Godfathers. Thus, the pastor fears he might do something to offend those “who seem to be somewhat.” (Gal.2:6).
The solution is to learn all you can about how to pastor your church. If all you are doing is preaching to the choir and reading books by those who are obsessed with “standards” they require of you; you will never overcome your fears. Confidence comes with learning, experience, and trust in the Lord.
“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.” Proverbs 9:10.
Pastor Ken Blue was born in Boswell, Ark. In 1955 he accepted Christ as his Savior. He and his wife Joyce were married in 1955. They have 5 children. He graduated from Midwestern Baptist Bible College in 1969 and started the Open Door Baptist Church in Lynnwood, Wa. where he pastored for 39 years. Because of health issues (ALS) he was forced to resign as pastor. It is his desire to continue to be used of God to help pastors and believers through this ministry.
Joel Hudson says
As always you say things that many are afraid to talk about. So many things in life can help bring fear, but God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Very timely Pastor, and thank you.