The trouble with Pastors are
“If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them gets lost, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others in the wilderness and go to search for the one that is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it, he will joyfully carry it home on his shoulders. When he arrives, he will call together his friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.’ In the same way, there is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away! (Luk 15:4-7 NLT or Luke 15.4-7 KJV)
Once you were like sheep who wandered away. But now you have turned to your Shepherd, the Guardian of your souls. (1Pe 2:25 NLT or 1st peter 2:25 KJV)
For those who are in congregations, or lead congregations, or serve congregations, let me ask you a question:
If a member of your congregation is noticeably absent, and doing something noticeably against church standards, emails you to tell you that they will no longer be attending – and you live no more than five doors down, what would you do?
Would you, if you saw them on the side of the road (the only road out), walking their dog, stop by, and tell them that they should come talk to you?
Or would you, as an imitator of Christ – our True Shepherd which is what you are supposed to be emulating – spend time with that person and encourage them to first not fall away, and if they have, then to return? Would you visit them? Would you call them just to let you know that they are being thought of?
Or, again, would you simply demand that they come see you?
It’s a good thing that our God didn’t act like that. A very good thing indeed.
Related post here.