Don’t worry! This is not a commentary on the soap opera, so please hold the stones😂. This title described me not too many years ago.
When my first opportunities for ministry came during my teen years, I was so excited. It didn’t matter if I preached in a nursing home, sang in a crowd of 20 people, or played the piano on the back side of nowhere. I was humbled that the God of Heaven would use the extremely insecure me.
As I grew older, I was introduced to the church growth movement. Contentment was nowhere in this picture. No number of salvations and baptisms was ever enough. No crowd was ever large enough. Every record had to be topped. Because I was trained by some who believed this as much as they believed the Gospel, I got sucked in.
When I went to my first full-time ministry, the pastor thought programs were the answer to everything. It didn’t matter if they were not quality as long as activities were planned so I could prove I was “earning my keep”. I was constantly belittled by a micromanager who wanted bigger under his terms. I had no liberty to change choir practice times or do anything progressive. So what did I do? I sent out resumes the entire time I was there and watched all the larger churches, dreaming of having the quality they possessed. I was restless and always wanting more because contentment was something that was preached not practiced.
When I finally began to achieve my dreams in music ministry, it was exciting. I was restless in a different way. I possessed the fire in my bones to preach, and God gave me my first pastorate in 2012. Family and church problems brought that to an end a year later. The still young, divorced me was still restless because I missed the “bigger and better”. Or was it really better?
You may be young and reading this post. You are probably thinking I’m a 38 year old guy who lost his fire. I am still passionate about serving Christ, but I’m not restlessly looking for the next best thing. I wait upon the Lord and do what I know to do in the process. Contentment is a posture of the heart. It is not settling.
I want to invite my older and wiser readers to weigh in and comment. How would you articulate the balance between contentment and settling?