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Hiya! Just a quick intro :) I lived in Nigeria for more than half of my life (so far) before moving to England and I have seen the best and the worst of both worlds. I was greatly inspired by the #OccupyNigeria protests and this blog is my way of #occupying. A lot of us compare African countries to the Western countries and I will mainly be talking about the positive things that I have observed and learnt in my few years of living here. Payme’s 2Cents is for all who dare to dream to see changes in their lifetime. It is for those who dream to see environments where 'helping' thrives. I will be giving my2cents worth on how we can work towards getting things to change for better. It would be great to know your opinions, so please leave comments. Remember to keep sharing posts that you enjoy. Follow @payme_my2cents. Thanks a lot for visiting!!! Enjoy my2cents :).

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

My Pastor (The Man, The Myth)

...it is of no value and only ruins those who listen... [NIV]
                                                                2Tim 2 vs. 14 - 19

Oh, forget about his being human. Forget that he is a teacher of ‘God’s word’ and not actually God. He is my ‘god’.  He is perfect or at least close to perfect. I must never hear of his failings or questions about his ministry as it reflects badly on me. Do you not realise that having an infallible pastor earns the church members bragging rights? What do you want people to think of me if they saw that my pastor is the one being talked about negatively in the news?

That bible verse, the one that says ‘by their fruits you shall know them’, well you should not really talk about his bad ‘fruits’ as it makes me look bad. It makes me feel judged like you are questioning my reasons for attending the church. You see, my pastor is a ‘god’ and he should not have to explain things to mere mortals.
Who says your judgement is right any way? Are you not judging his fruit by your own flawed fruits? I would never go to a church with a pastor whose fruits are as good as or worse than mine. Any news about my pastor’s wrongs is false. Like I said, he is a ‘god’ with a perfect relationship with his wife – they never argue or fight. His wife is perfect too – as gentle as a dove. You mean their children? They are straight ‘A’ and tongue-speaking children.
He reads his bible and hears from God daily. I do not have as much time to dedicate to studying my bible in-depth as he does, so I depend on him to read and then teach me. I do not think that you get how perfect my pastor is. Why does he need to explain himself when we are here for him, me and other church members? Did the bible not say ‘touch not my anointed’? Why the questions? If you have anything to ask, get on your knees and pray to God about my ‘god’.
My pastor should release a statement to allay people of their fears and doubts? Do politicians do the same?
“Oh, church standards and political standards are the same?”
Yes, why not. Politicians do not explain their source of wealth; they do not explain how they spend their money, why should my ‘god’ do so? I am a member and I do not even know where everything goes so why should you the outsider care? You are just trying to show me that your ‘god’ is bigger and better than my ‘god’. It does not really matter that some of your questions are logical, let the big God judge.

My pastor is a god; he has nothing to do with mortals, let him be!

Religious issues are not so black and white and this is not an article written to justify any of the ‘issues’. It is an article for the defenders and the critics – you and I.  
As controversial as Pastor Oyakhilome’s video in which he discussed masturbation was, I appreciate the fact that he responded to the criticisms about his stance. I have my own opinions about the issue and while I do not necessarily agree with him on that topic, at least I am sure of where he stands. Preachers are humans first. A lot of them have chosen to submit their flesh to learning and in turn teach us about the word of God. This does not mean we should lose our minds.

It is not for me to defend or ridicule a preacher. I do not claim to know all that goes on in my church and I accept that churches with large denominations are not as easy to learn about, but please do not judge me when I respectfully ask logical questions. Respect others to make up their own minds and do not bamboozle people with ‘generic’ bible verses. That I ask questions about tithes and offerings does not mean I am doomed to be poor neither should my questions about sexual immorality deem me hellbound.
It is impossible to draw boundaries that would suit everyone when it comes to religion. Different sentiments and traditions make religion an easy target for abuse. You should not expect me to take everything in ‘hook, line and sinker’ because it involves a pastor. When I have things in my bible that I do not understand, I go on my knees; when I have things in my church that I do not understand, why can I not go to my pastor? The important thing is to not be rude and as such sin when asking questions. I do not think it is too much for pastors to release statements about ongoing issues in order to clarify any misgivings.

We sometimes put so much pressure on preachers due to our own hypocrisy. You can hear a verse in the bible quoted and taught in different ways. Do we forget about our personal responsibility to study our bibles in order to be able to discern right and wrong teachings? Balance is important in everything. Check out the fruits of a preacher, if you like them and can attend his church, do so. If you do not like them, move on. It is good to ask questions in order to become better enlightened as long as we are careful to not sin. Blind criticism helps no one.
I also do not believe that the church should be likened to how banks, governments etc. are run. This cheapens it to human level. That some people/pastors fall short does not mean we should totally scrape the expected standard and bring it to ‘our level’. Church is about bringing people to Jesus – seemingly outrageous things should be explained and not grouped under ‘people will always talk’. Teach me how to get to speak in tongues and do not forget to tell me WHY; teach me about the benefits of giving and do not forget to show me HOW it blesses me and others;  teach me how to act right and do not forget to tell me WHY I owe it to myself and my society. I do not want generic quotes; I need the real deal.

I do not want my pastor to be the politician that lies to me, the boss that bullies me, the parent that orders me around; I simply want him to be MY PASTOR. He needs the same understanding, love and respect that I give to others. He is not infallible.
My pastor is not a god; he is a man – my spiritual teacher. 


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22 comments:

princesssimysola said...

So true... Some people have actually made their Pastors gods, when infact they are mere man still striving towards perfection. people even celebrate their pastors more than they praise God.
Nicely written dear...

La Cream said...

First time on ur blog.Really nice.God is ur strenght

1igboboy said...

A true Depiction of the meaning of Christianity. Thank you for reducing "God of Men" to mere mortals. I appreciate this truth. Thank you again

AlexIsJB said...

So true...will pass this on..well done Payme

N said...

That the excellency of the power may be of God.....is why pastors must be real human beings who have feet of clay like most humans. Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith....is why we must not make gods out of our pastors. Unto his own master he stands or falls.....is why all that other talk about pastors is comical. I get your point (even tho convoluted). Its a needful discourse and I like that its open for discussion now. That is what you probably intended and so, purpose achieved! Sometimes, we get the pastor we deserve more than anything else....

Payme said...

Thank you for reading :)

Anonymous said...

Payme, u've really captured it well and I say Kudos to you.
I did learn one or two things here.

Kikiowo Ileowo said...

You are so on point. I just must note that I am a christian but have got no religion in me. 'Religion is man trying to get God', while 'Christianity is God getting man". Religion is all about obeying spiritual rules for tradition sake while Christianity is obeying spiritual rules for LOVE sake.

Lastly, every Religion is man-made while Christianity is God-made.

You can read more on my article 'Religion My Foot' on www.paradigmshiftnigeria.blogspot.com

Nice write up sis!

Kingdavid said...

This is straight from the heart.... Bless you...

Payme said...

Thanks for reading & taking the time to comment guys..I really appreciate it :)

tope said...

You are point...my pastor is a god and my church has no blemish...

saintlua said...

absolutely balanced point of view.1st time here,and i must say it's a good use of my time!love it!

Legendkid said...

Your Church my church, your pastor my pastor.
What even baffles me is when people are saying the pay tithe to the pastor. God is still merciful to the sinners.
legendkid blog industry.

Jummyshow said...

Pemi,dis write-up is definitely onpoint !!!! Kip up d good work dear :* :* :*

raerae luv said...

Nice write up! Ppl would rather go ask their pastor about things first than to ask God...*phew*

Abdullahi Aborode said...

Brilliant piece! I'm glad u knw dz, as a muslim I dnt rly wanna get involved cos of religious fanatics... It also goes to my fellow muslims dt worship these "gOD of men"... It is well!

ope says said...

payme, thank you for this.you hit the nail on the head

Reine_Laglace said...

I absolutely agree. Pastors like Priests are humans first and are bound to make mistakes. While it's not in our place to judge them, we also shouldn't defend blindly.

Anonymous said...

Pastors are God's representatives here and that is why we listen to their teachings but if we are not religious we will also know that we all are Kings and Priests at the same time and therefore if we play our part as God's sons and daughters we would not need to depend on pastors all the time, this was why Jesus came in human form so that HE can relate better with humans and therefore also choose people from among us to be shephards to his flock, Jesus was tempted and so pastors are also tempted.

Oscar said...

"Preachers are humans first. A lot of them have chosen to submit their flesh to learning and in turn teach us about the word of God. This does not mean we should lose our minds"-This is where many of us miss it. Many take their spiritual leader as speaking directly from God, forgetting that he also has his opinions which he wrap around 'what the Lord said'. Bless your hands and brain Payme. good one here

Larigold said...

It's quite amazing that while we sing 'Jehovah has the final say' during church service, we act as if our pastors truly do.

thisiseseosa said...

First of all Pemi, you know I visit your blog regularly so pls don't kill me that I haven't read this article. I just did and It was so real. Our pastors are not gods. U said it like it should be said. God bless you dearie.