I’ve never been the President of the United States, but I have been a pastor for more than half of my life. I’ve was threatened that the church doors would be locked and the building burned down with me in it. I’ve been warned that my throat would be slit in the middle of the night. I’ve been called a false prophet, a thief, an easily manipulated dolt, an idiot, and much, much worse. There have twice been demands to return all the money people have donated over many years. I’ve overheard a group saying that I should have been fired before I was hired. Sounds like an American president or two.
One Sunday a man pulled me aside after the morning service; always a frightening event for a new pastor. You’re like a dog we used to have, he started.
I nervously smiled and thought of all the bad directions he could go.
That old dog that could do everything, then that old dog got sick and died. We were devastated. We thought about getting a new dog, but we were sure no dog could ever fill the gap in our hearts.
A friend’s dog gave birth to a litter of puppies and we were offered one. We took a look at the puppies and one stood out and we brought her home.
The puppy was a wonderful addition to our family. Right away we learned to love her, and it turned out the new puppy was better than the old dog. You’re like that puppy.
A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver (Proverbs 25:11).
Ask any pastor; it’s a lonely and often thankless job. I’m grateful for the people who not only appreciate me for what I do, but for friends who appreciate me.