2. You don’t have to pray or rely on God as much. Whatever happens, happens. Don’t worry about all that ‘faith’ stuff.
3. You give the loudest and most opinionated member — man or woman — the opportunity to decide what happens next.
4. Active members who want to serve and be a part of a church with strong leadership will leave. Hey, more responsibilities for you!
5. Your debate and rhetoric skills will get better as people argue and gossip over what’s happening at church.
6. More closed-door meetings! Especially ‘emergency’ meetings. Everyone likes meetings, right?
7. Some people call them church splits. Others call them church plants. You say “tomato,” I say “tomahto.” Let’s plant more churches!
8. You don’t have to worry about what the Bible says about shepherding. Restoring New Testament Christianity can be hard, after all. Just worry about keeping the peace instead.
9. You will get to experiment with ‘small groups,’ since that is all you will have on Sunday evenings & Wednesday nights.
10. Counting the financial contributions will be quicker and easier, as members will save their money for other things they love and believe in.
Of course, I say all of these things in jest. Sadly, there is truth to each one of the above items. Yet none of these are positive or good. Everyone loses when there are weak elders. When leaders aren’t doing their job, sheep aren’t shepherded, souls aren’t guided, and Christ is not glorified.
Here are some things you can do to help your elders:
- Pray for them every day.
- Make sure they know you expect them to watch over your soul (Heb. 13:17).
- Make sure they know you appreciate their difficult leadership role.
- Encourage them, especially when you sense they are ever stepping outside of their comfort zone and trying to do what is right.
- Be an example to them of what a faithful member is like.
- Make sure they know that as long as they are trying to shepherd according to God’s Word, you will be their biggest fan.
- Secretly organize a congregational ‘Eldership Appreciation Dinner.’ At the dinner, have someone read your elders a letter from the whole church telling them how much they are supported, loved, and encouraged to shepherd.
- Never engage in or listen to gossip about them. Instead, build up their image.
- Smother them with compliments whenever they publicly teach, hold a Bible study, or visit.
- Did I mention to pray for them every day?