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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Break (02/06/06)

TITLE: The Elder
By Yvette Nietzen


Greg had been the elder in his church for close to 3 years now. He was the man that new all of the ins and outs and privy to many of the going on of the church. He was the pastors’ right hand man, he was the man. One Sunday morning, Greg’s comfort zone changed swiftly.

That warm Sunday morning, after the worship and the announcements, the Pastor took to the pulpit and said the following;

“Church, today there will be no sermon. The sermon I have for you will be coming out of my innermost spirit, my journaling with the Lord.

Greg had no clue what was going on.

“Today church, I am going to speak about growth and change, and most importantly, a change of direction.”

Greg did no like being on the outside of things, he felt uneasy.

“My spirit has been going through many changes these past few months,” the Pastor continued “and the Lord has been speaking to me very clearly about my next step in ministry. I have cried out to the Him for a deeper revelation and knowledge of Him, and the Lord is taking me on a new journey. This is a journey that I must do, as the fire within my belly is growing larger and I cannot contain it. Church, I am leaving this pulpit for a season and spending time with our heavenly father. ”

The gasps in the church were all around, and Greg could not believe what he was hearing.

Pastor Bob gave a lovely testimony full of passion and zeal of his personal relationship with the Lord, his growing desire of his revelation and to put the icing on the cake, he even introduced the new pastor that would take over.

Greg’s feeling of betrayal was growing evident.

At the end of the service, the time came for Bob and Greg to meet, and Greg churned out, “Why didn’t you tell me, I needed to know this?”

Bob gently replied, “I tried Greg, I gave you hints and tried to bring this up, but Greg as one friend to another I feel that I can say this. You were more absorbed into yourself than my needs. When I needed a friend the most, you were not there. When I would try to share my intimate times with the Lord with you, you quickly changed the subject to something that mattered to you most.”

Pastor Bob continued, “Jesus willingly gave up his spirit on the cross, he did not need his legs broken to die, he willingly obeyed the father and did what was required of him. Greg, I am doing the same, I must obey the Father. I must follow his direction in my life. I tried to share all of this with you, but Greg you were not available.”

Bob’s words pierced Greg’s heart and soul, and at that moment he realized just how self absorbed he had been these past few years.

Greg enjoyed the control, his position; he enjoyed knowing all the details of the church and its members. He enjoyed the power that came with it, and when all this became evident to him, he felt sick to his stomach.

Greg was broken, his spirit was broken, he knew that there was only thing he could do. Die to everything. Die to his position in the church and let God rule and reign in his life.

No more Elder Greg, he gave that to the Lord. He let that controlling power over him break, and out of that brokenness, out of the death, resurrected a new man, ready to have his belly filled with the fresh fire of the Holy Spirit guiding him every step of the way.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 02/15/06
This is a touching and convicting story. You have quite a few spelling errors which detract a little from the story. Consider an edit, and keep writing! This message really needs to be heard.
Joe Moreland02/20/06
This is a great insight into the life of someone who has his eyes opened in the space of a heartbeat. We have all either known this type of elder, been this type of elder or aspired to be this type of elder. I shudder to think at how, even within the church (possibly moreso), a station of service can become your undoing. Anything we love more than God, even being in service to him, can become our personal idol.
This is a humbling eye opener of a message. We can get so adsorbed in our ministry work and forget that God is suppose to be in charge. Mechanical in our speech. Mechanical in our walk is such the outcome. Great work! I emailed this to my Pastor and some of the Elders of my church. Thank you. God bless.