As I was reading statements from pastors about how they responded to the Coronavirus onset in 2020, I could really sense the emotions at hand. Pastors did not want to have to cancel services. They agonized over the decision for various reasons. Then I began to think about the various things that break a pastor’s heart.
Wayward people break a pastor’s heart. While some may think pastors are heaping up some big judgment, it really does grieve us when we see people making poor choices.
Criticism breaks a pastor’s heart. I can tell you that constructive criticism did hurt, but that was for my benefit. But when people began to gossip and assume my intentions about things, that hurt.
The list is really much longer. One of the hardest things is possessing the gift of discernment. This gift often feels like a curse as you see the train wreck happening long before it happens. I can foresee the deacon who appears supportive creating division, the negative comment coming, the family splitting up, etc. I can discern things happening within the people sitting under the sound of my preaching. It’s a heavy weight.
Here is one thing I know above all others – God is near to the broken-hearted. The Bible says so! Are you grieving today? God is near! Is your life a wreck? God is near! Don’t lose heart! You are not alone! God cares!