This blog is written specifically about a dear friend. He has given me permission to write this blog, and include his name, church, etc. Follow him on twitter HERE.
Have you ever cared for someone and did not want to see them hurt? I have. That’s what this blog is about today.
For several years I have wanted my friend to fail at pastoring. Before one jumps to any negative conclusions about me, please understand the motive and heart behind this statement.
You see, Allen Bailey is my friend – my close friend. There are many things on which Allen and I disagree as it relates to ministry methods, theology, etc. I would dare say that there is not much that we do agree on when it comes to church ministry. But that has never prevented us from laughing about it and being great friends.
During the time I have known and watched Allen I have seen him wounded deeply by many of the people he is leading. This hurts me as well. I do not want to see my friend weighted down and exhausted. I want him to succeed abundantly. However, as I mentioned above, I wanted him to fail. Fail at what? Pastoring this particular church. Why? I wanted him to be free from the unnecessary pressures that a young ministry can carry.
You see, Allen has been sent to a pretty tough, and religious area in North East Alabama. It is the place where I grew up – this is how I know how tough the area can be. The church location plays against him as well – he is not in a metro area.
There are tons of factors that play against Allen – not to mention his friends hoping he fails. Again, I do not want him to fail for ego sake or anything pertaining to my personal life or ministry. Not at all. I wanted him to fail so that he has a good enough reason to pack up and ship out. But he has chosen not to fail.
I don’t get it. People have tried to destroy his name, family, and reputation. But he won’t fail. Others have wished he would fail, but he won’t fail. Money, attendance, and other factors have played against him for years, but he just won’t fail.
Talking to him over the last few months has given me some great insight as to why he won’t fail. I would say the main reason is his willingness to refuse failure. Consistency has proven to be his friend.
Today, I am glad he did not fail. Sure, I wish it could have been easier for a friend, but regardless of my feelings or thoughts about his life and ministry, he has been the one to remain faithful – even when I have been less than faithful as a moral supporter.
Allen’s church is growing. His ministry is seeing new life and more and more people are being changed by the work he is doing in the Jasper area of AL.
I wanted him to fail so that he could bail out of all the hell that a young church can bring. Now, I am glad he has succeeded so that he can bail others out of their own personal hell.
Here are three things I learned from Allen’s journey:
- Even when friends want you to fail (for whatever reason) keep moving if you are sure this is God’s plan for your life.
- My opinion of what someone else feels is their calling does not determine their outcome.
- Real friends always want the best for others, even if it seems warped at times.
Have you ever had these sort of warped thoughts with good intentions?
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