Critical Spirit

I’ve been in ministry for over 50 years and I’ve seen many churches and known many pastors and every church and every pastor is different.  Each one has different strengths and weaknesses.  They will do things differently than you will and you have to be careful in watching them, for you can’t always give your opinion.  I can sometimes get analytical and have a tendency to diagnose churches, pastor, and people and determine where they could be doing better.  I must be careful,  for this can cause problems if I get critical and have a critical spirit, this can destroy relationships.

You may see the flaws in others, that is fine.  Just don’t place your magnifying glass over them.  Learn from their mistakes.  You will find out that they know more about what they are doing than you give them credit for.  So in summing this up; “Don’t be hasty in speaking your own personal opinion on everything.”  Time has a way of bringing out the truth and you don’t need to be the one doing it.

I once had minister tell me that if I would do things a certain way that we would grow faster.  I kept telling him that what he was proposing would not work.  We were growing but not as fast as he thought we should.  He is now pastoring his own church and sees very little growth because of some of the things that He thought would work so well, didn’t work so well.

I want to urge you to be very- very cautious in correcting an older minister.  If he pursues your opinion, then share it with him.  Otherwise, remember and ponder it, but keep it to yourself.

Here is an excerpt for an article by Cindy Jacobson that I have been using for years called : The Development of Disloyalty.  A critical spirit leads us to develop disloyalty.


Ephesians 4:29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

In himself he must now justify his own independent spirit. The leadership has rejected his ideas on this occasion so he feels that there must be something wrong with the judgment and discernment of the leadership. His spiritual pride is at stake. He begins to use his own ideas as a criterion for the judgment of all the decisions of the oversight. As a result he develops a critical spirit toward spiritual leadership.

(you can see this article under The Development of Disloyalty or under Leadership Manual)

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