SHELBYVILLE, IL. —
Last week I wrote about what you should expect from your pastor, and I got an amazing response (article can be read online atshelbyvilledailyunion.com/ask_pastor). It is very nice to hear about how people have been encouraged or challenged by these articles. But I would be neglectful not to explain the other side of the expectations: what we as pastors expect from you, our congregation. For some of you this is going to be a great encouragement and some of you may realize some personal change may be in order.
First and foremost, we expect from you what you expect from us: to be biblical—rooted in God’s Word. This comes in a variety of ways that I will explain below, but it is simple in its concept. We expect your beliefs to match up with the Bible. If you do not know what the Bible says about a particular issue, ask us. We can tell you where to read, but we do expect that you will try to believe what the Bible states and not hold your opinions as fact.
Which brings me to my second point: we expect that all believers will grow spiritually. Growth will be more rapid in some than others and some people will go through growth spurts, but we do expect that you will spiritually grow. This will happen through prayer, reading and applying the scripture to your lives, attending church regularly, and supporting the church with your time, talents, and treasures.
Lastly, we expect that a Christian will act like a Christian. Paul gives us a list of fruits of the Spirit in Galatians 5 and we expect those gifts to direct you in your walk. Jesus states five times to go and tell the Gospel to the masses. In like manner, we expect that you will be a witness to your family, friends, and strangers and tell them about Christ.
Everyone is prone to sin, but we still expect a lot from you as well as ourselves. We expect that you will be biblical in your beliefs, that you will grow spiritually stronger, and that you will act like a Christian, doing what the Bible commands of you. You may think that we are expecting too much from you but when you call yourself a Christian you are held to a higher standard, a standard put there by God.
Do you live up to the expectations?
Chase Smith is the pastor of Fellowship Baptist Church in Shelbyville. For more information from Chase or the church call 774-3636 or visit www.fellowshipinshelbyville.com.