We all like to know the hidden side of everything, to hear someone “spill the tea”…
Well, it’s time to spill some tea. I’m going to let you in on the top 10 conversations pastors hear in the church lobby.
My reason for doing this? It’s to help you know you are not alone if you have these same questions or thoughts.
I want to give you some answers… And to maybe even make you laugh a little too.
10 Things that Pastors Hear in the Church Lobby
- Will you pray for my family?
This is a heartbreaking question as people share their pain over a family member or entire family straying far from God and not interested in pursuing a relationship with him. You are not alone. We all have family members who we pray for. And God is working on them. Don’t give up.
- Do you think these are the end times?
Friends, Paul thought we were in the end times in 70AD. We are always in the end times.
- Will you pray for me?
This is often about a marriage or a physical ailment or an upcoming predicament, and in this moment they are reaching out for any and everyone to help. Every time I hear this I’m honored to be asked. It’s a gift to be invited into someone’s pain. Keep sharing. Keep asking.
- Why did God allow this to happen?
It could be about Covid, it could be a diagnosis, it could be a job loss, or even a death in the family… We all want to know where God is. Did he allow it, or worse, did he cause it? We blame ourselves, we blame the church, and we blame God. While this one always is difficult to hear, I remember that part of our grief is anger. We go through it, not around it.
- This is the year for the Raiders.
… No it’s not.
- I’m not being fed…
No, this is not a reference to a lack of donuts at church. This is a reference to the perceived depth of teaching coming from the stage. The funny thing is, everyone has different definitions of “depth” – some want more Bible verses, some want more theological concepts. Others want more expressive worship, and some just assume if it’s hard to understand, then it must be “deep”. First of all, remember that complicated isn’t always deep, and simple isn’t always shallow. Second, if you’re a believer, your job is to feed yourself. You come to church to bring others, encourage others, and worship God. So who did you bring, and who did you help? You’re only as deep as the last person you served.
- We hated our last pastor, so we came here.
This probably means that it won’t belong before you hate me too… 😬
- How come God hasn’t answered my prayer?
Maybe he has, but you can’t see it… Maybe, like author Mark Batterson shared in my podcast with him: God is waiting on you to do the “natural” before he does the “super.” So, what is the next right thing for you to do?
- I tried to contact someone in your church, but never heard back.
If that’s you, I’m so sorry. Please, forgive us. Can I help you connect with someone right now? You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
- That message was good, but did you hear Joel Osteen this morning?
No… I WAS WORKING! 🙂
Did you see a common theme in all of these?
We all wonder if God is going to answer our prayers… But can I tell you a secret? Pastors wonder this as well.
I decided to research what Jesus’ response was when people would ask him for things. What’s fascinating is that he very rarely just simply responded “yes” or “no”… He often told them to do something specific.
So, I compiled those things that he told his followers to do into “7 things to do when you are waiting on God”, as a way to help people in prayer and waiting.