I'm worship leader in our small church of 25. I've been there 6 years and knew for at least the first 4 that it was God's call. I was young (21), the congregation was older but I felt God say to be around those that were experienced in the faith to learn from them. At the time some of my friends were encouraging me to join their churches because of the amount of young people there was. I stood my ground and honestly, I wouldn't be the person I am today if it wasn't for this church.
I'm now married and my partner has been in the church 2 years and hasn't settled since day one. The congregation really is an odd bunch but there has been 3 people get saved in the last 2 years and we're only small, so that's significant.
I've grown in my worship leading ability and am hearing God more when leading which is encouraging.
Problem is, we're actually really lonely. There isn't anyone in church we can go to if we just need to off load or we're having a hard time. There's no young couples at all, let alone our age. There is a lot of need and we seem to deal with a lot of it. The pastor and his wife definitely get their fair share and are such servants but we just feel like a square peg in a round hole and don't know what to do about it.
The pastor is great but it's hard to go to him and say, actually this church isn't where we feel we fit, until we know God's calling us somewhere else - right?
But last night the 6 of us leaders got together to talk though some housegroup issues and for a bit of training from the pastor, which was good, but then there was comments like 'we're not all here by mistake together, in unity'...we felt riddled with guilt sitting there thinking, actually, we're not sure how committed we are here.
We don't have anyone we can go to for advise, so here I am relying on a web discussion hoping that someone can advise us. Of course we're praying, and we're pushing doors to see if this is actually time to move on, but do I continue leading worship knowing that we probably will be leaving within the next year? Do we drop leading housegroup knowing that there's noone else to pick it up right now so it's putting even more burden on the pastor? Do we sit down and tell the pastor and his wife how we feel knowing that he will probably strip of us responsibility (which is helping us grow as individuals) because he'll feel we're not committed?
Blessings in Christ.
Thanks for the reply. The word 'frustrating' is pretty much how we feel right now. I think my response to Wulf kind of summed up that our direction and that of the church seems to different so we really need to look at our vision as a couple and the gifts and skills we have, how we're being used and how we could be used and if there's room for that here.
I'm glad you made the right move, that has got to be the worst thing after all those years, to leave and then realise you left for the wrong reasons...
I agree, we want to leave as friends and we want to be prayed out/supported. I think we're not so worried about the emotional pressure, as the pressure of 'are you sure you've heard from God?' and then us doubting, you know? But at the end of the day, when we stand in front of Jesus, we will be held to account for our lives and we don't want to have to say, we felt time was up, but we stayed because we felt under pressure! We want to live our lives to the glory of His name and we won't do that fully if we're in the wrong place.
Thanks for sharing your story.
I feel for you and can say I've been there done that. I just left the fellowship [I use the term lightly] of a church where I was deeply involved in at least 9 different ministry areas and every single Sunday I would leave feeling like a lonely sack of poop.
I knew the obvious reasons this was happening, it was a super large church over 2000, the only service I could attend and serve at was geared toward a much younger generation, my husband never attended with me. But the bottom line was no one there reach out to me despite all my involvement. Pastors were too self involved to even acknowledge my presence more than once. I had at least 3 friends come and visit and all three had the same experience of no one even greeting them except me.
I knew I had to go. I have yet to really figure out where God is leading me
I work for another church in the mornings but don't want to call it home
So I keep looking for a local church that meets Sunday evenings
I pray that if you decide to leave that you do so in a manner that is forthright and maybe can help this church learn and grow from losing you. You def. need to speak with the pastor and all others you work with. Don't just slink away.
God may not call you anywhere for a while. Go explore what else is out there and see where you might be able to connect and continue to grow.
First, we have to remember that church isn't a social club, it is a serving club. As a leader, you are there to serve.
However, what you put here has me thinking that your church has some major issues and you are probably quite oppressed. You might not even think you are, but everything in your post screams oppression.
If I were you, I'd be investigating and praying for other opportunities in other places where you might be able to experience a healthier Christlike environment.