Is the glass half empty or half full? If a pastor wants to remain zealous to do ministry, this is the wrong question to be asking.
Too often we find ourselves asking how we’re feeling about ministry. Even when we pastors get together we ask each other the question, “How ya’ doin’?” The underlying question being asked is, “How are you feeling about your ministry right now?” There’s no sin in wanting to help a fellow pastor realize if they’re in an emotional funk. And we want to know so that we can encourage one another. But it seems pastors have created the fraternal order of the “feeling half empty or feeling half full.”
When a pastor’s default becomes evaluating how they’re feeling about ministry rather than focusing on the ministry, the enemy has been given the emotional pitcher and he’s going to give that pastor a glass that is HALF EMPTY some days and HALF FULL other days. He gives pastors the HALF FULL days so they will know what it feels like to lose passion on the HALF EMPTY days. When the glass is perceived as HALF FULL that means there’s a HALF EMPTY part of the glass just waiting to happen.
I’ve noticed that prior to Peter having the responsibility of the church that he was a glass half empty and glass half full kind of guy. The glass was HALF FULL when he stepped out of the boat to walk on the water with Jesus. But when he got out on the water the feelings of HALF EMPTY showed up and he began to sink. (Matt. 14) In Matthew 16 Peter is asked by Jesus, “Who do you say I am?” Peter’s response, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Peter, the man of the HALF FULL glass. Then in Matthew 26 he denies even knowing who Jesus is… three times. Peter, the man of the HALF EMPTY glass.
But when Peter received the Holy Spirit and embraced the responsibility of leading the church, there’s no longer any wavering. He’s neither an optimist nor a pessimist. His focus on the church refocused his eyes off of emotions and forced him to gaze with laser-like attention on the mission before him, to lead God’s church.
I really do wonder… Is it possible to spend less time in the dark places by getting rid of the glass and giving our attention to the undeniable and world revising responsibility God has given us… His church?