Silent Killer

He was just 30 years old. While other people his age were still searching for a career, he was already the pastor of a mega-church. He talked often about his call to ministry. He loved his church with a passion. He loved his beautiful wife and three young sons more than anything. He impacted thousands through his upbeat sermons. This week he took his own life.
This is the second suicide in a month involving a high profile pastor that I am aware of. And quite frankly, denominational leaders across the nation are alarmed at the rash of pastoral suicides, in just the last couple of years.
There are several false assumptions pastors tend to buy into when it comes to dealing with their own anxiety and depression:
1. As a pastor I should not be struggling with anxiety and depression.
Unfortunately in a broken world we do struggle with such things. So did Moses (Numbers 11:14-15) ….. so did Elijah (I Kings 19:3-4) …..so did Jonah (Jonah 4:3)….. And even Paul said He “despaired of life itself.” (2 Corinthians 1:8 NIV)….. And what about Jesus? He said His own soul was overwhelmed! Matthew 26:38.
Anxiety and depression can come to us through a number of different avenues, and if allowed to go unchecked, it could become serious. It might come because of spiritual battles we fight. It might be caused by broken relationships, or from negative thinking patterns, or chronic pain or grief. It might even be caused by a chemical imbalance.
No matter how depression hits us, the pain is real and it is devastating.
2. I can handle this by myself - I just have to pray harder and get into the word more.
Really? You and I were never intended to walk alone. If we really believe in God’s perfect grace that He gives to us, or the grace that He gives to others to extend to us, why do we tend to default back to works, especially when it is “doing” that often brings us to stress and burnout in the first place?
Jesus’ idea is not to work harder or to pray louder, but to rest in Him. He says, “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to Me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me- watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill- fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (Matthew 11:28-30 MSG)
3. I have battled depression for so long, there is no hope for recovery.
Not true at all! To believe there is no hope for recovery is to refute God’s Word where He declares Himself to be our Great Physician! There is hope!
4. If the OMN or my church board knows I struggle with anxiety and depression, It could negatively impact my ministry.
Just think how depression and anxiety could impact your ministry if you don’t get help!
Admittedly, there is a stigma regarding mental health issues. There is not the same stigma when another part of our body malfunctions. We freely discuss with others our gall bladder surgery or the pills the doctor has prescribed for other maladies, but when it comes to matters of the mind we don’t want to talk about it.
In his letter to the Corinthians, Paul uses the human body to illustrate how the Church is to function. He emphasizes the fact that each part is important to the other parts of the body. I would surmise that the mind fits into all of that, and thus the importance to keep the mind in good health.
If you suffer from anxiety or depression I want to remind you…..

You are not alone. others are facing some of the same devastating issues you are facing.
God has not left you, even though you feel distanced from Him.
There are friends who will lovingly walk with you in confidentiality.
You are loved and too valuable to lose.
The following christian counselors are as close as your phone.

Ministry Resources International 425-827-3036
Assemblies of God help-line 1-800-867-4011
Oregon Ministry Network Pastoral Care 503-393-4411

From Fear to Faith

The news and commentary was blaring in my face like an angry lion ready to pounce on it’s prey - and none of it was “good” news! ….Racial riots in North Carolina… Russia sends nuclear-capable bombers on mission near South Korea, Japan… State Department cautions tourists about violence in Cancun, Cozumel and more… and if that isn’t enough, there are the hate mongers that believe freedom of speech means they can say anything they want, to whomever they want, whenever they want. I have lived through 12 presidents of the United States and have never heard such hatred toward a president as this president faces on a daily basis.

“Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don't be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”

I was beginning to spiral downward in fear and despair wondering just how much more our nation can take, until the gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit reminded me of what the Creator of the Universe says: “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don't be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.” (Isa. 41:10)

Fear is a terrible thing to live with. Living in fear brings more fear. It compounds daily. Fear brings anger and anger brings despair, causing one to act and think irrationally. Despair quickly erodes hope, then the cycle starts all over again. And, if fear is not dealt with, it will eventually kill and destroy.

That is why the God of the Universe commands us to not fear. And I can choose to not live in fear because God promises to “be with me.” Someone once said, “Pastor, you know I am just not very strong.” I said, “why not? you have the God of the Universe living in you!”

We are also commanded, “don’t be discouraged.” I find that when I begin to be discouraged, it is often because I am listening to more news than I am to God’s word. When I begin to be fearful, it is often because I am more aware of the presence of my enemy than I am aware of the presence of God.

I can choose to not be discouraged because the God of the Universe says He will “strengthen me and help me.” Why would I want to live one day without the strength and help that comes directly from the hand of God?! And He declares that His hand is victorious!

Be encouraged today, my friend! God is greater!

Going From Hot to Boiling

When I order a Latte at Starbucks, I always order it at 190 degrees. My latte very seldom is delivered to me at 190 degrees. Even though I persist, I realize there may be several reasons my latte never makes it to my desired temperature.

Perhaps the baristas are so programmed that when they hear “190 degrees” it translates as “extra hot”, and extra hot is relevant- it means different things to different people.

Or, perhaps the barista simply is not listening. I often find I have to repeat parts of my order.

Water is very hot at 211 degrees. But water boils at 212 degrees.

Or, maybe the baristas have been trained that 190 degrees is simply too hot for clumsy people like myself, and they do not want to get sued when I dump it in my lap (even though I was told that their training manual actually sets the limit of hotness right at 190 degrees) thus, they hesitate to do what the customer asks - Another example of perfect strangers knowing what is best for me!

Lastly, maybe the barista doesn’t realize what a difference one or two degrees actually makes.

For instance, water is very hot at 211 degrees. But water boils at 212 degrees. Do you realize the implications of this? Boiling water produces steam. And if there is enough steam, it can power a majestic 100-ton locomotive like we see in a western movie. Hot water won’t move that heavy machine one inch. But give it enough steam from boiling water, and it can move practically anything!

So what would happen if each of us turned up the heat just one degree, going from hot to boiling? What would happen if we turned up the heat in our relationship with the Lord? What would happen if we turned up the heat in relation to our family? What would happen if we turned up the heat in our ministry by one degree?

Earl Nightingale said, “if you will spend an extra hour each day of study in your chosen field, you will be a national expert in that field in five years or less.”

It reminds me of Galatians 6:9: “So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” In my own words, let’s not just settle for “average” but let’s turn up the heat to boiling because we WILL reap a harvest…!

From Death to Life

This morning a dear pastor friend of mine wrote on his Facebook page about celebrating a 46th anniversary. He said, “this anniversary is very important to me because without a miracle it will most likely be our last.” Later, he told me over the phone, “I never expected to be walking down this road.”

How can I really know what is going through my friend's mind today? How can I really know the measure of grief he is experiencing as he watches his wife of 46 years slip away because of a brain tumor? How can I comfort him when I have not experienced what he is experiencing?

Transitions- some are sudden curves that throw us out of balance. Some are very slow and subtle. Some transitions are very scary while other transitions are turned into a celebration. No matter what transition in life we face, I find that life is one big transition!

Life is one big transition!

While some transitions throw us off balance, there is one anchor that keeps us standing upright.
“I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38, 39)

When words I use to try to comfort my friend seem to fail me, I can pray Romans 8:38,39. I can pray that the powerful love of God will be his anchor to keep him walking his path with confidence and assurance that he does not walk that path alone. He has the God of the universe walking with him. What an amazing God we serve!

From Zero to Fifty, Just Like That!

A great king once made a very profound statement: “Once I was young, and now I am old….” Psalm 27:35) Now that’s a transition that regardless of who we are or what status in life we live, we all relate to the king’s profoundness! And if one reads between the lines a bit, you might even hear the king add, “from young to old just like that!”

This year Delores and I are celebrating our fiftieth year of married life. And we went from zero to fifty, just like that! So, we decided we would celebrate this whole year just in case another “just like that!” happens.

The other part of the king's statement says, “…yet I have never seen the godly abandoned or their children begging for bread.” (Psalm 27:35). That’s our story! From young to old, just like that, but I have never been abandoned or my seen my children begging for bread!

Some have asked us what has sustained us for fifty years when there seem to be so many reasons these days to not stay together.

For starters, when we were engaged and talked about “growing old together,” we decided to strike several words from our vocabulary. Words like “divorce” or “I hate you!” would not be part of our conversation regarding each other because we realized that contrary to popular belief, words do hurt, and they are very difficult to retrieve once they have been spoken. Honestly, there have been a time or two when one or both of us felt like divorce might be the easiest way, or we felt like uttering those hurtful words. But we both remembered our covenant with each other. We have never used those words to threaten each other.

We also decided that we would read the word together. Hebrews 4:12 tells us that the Word is living. When there are so many things that would seek to destroy or “kill” our marriage, why wouldn’t we want to read that living word together from time to time? His Word speaks life into our relationship! His Word speaks healing when either one of us or both of us are broken!

Along with the Living Word as our guide, we also decided it would be good to pray together daily with each other and for each other. Hardly a day goes by without that prayer. Our prayer time is not lengthy, but when we invite the Holy Spirit to be involved in our daily lives, we each sense His presence guiding us through our day.

In spite of the elimination of certain words, there have been times when we have hurt each other. We decided from the beginning to not go to bed angry (Ephesians 4:26). We have had some pretty late night conversations, but they have always ended in asking each other’s forgiveness and once again declaring our love for each other.

Actually, I don’t think it is all that hard for couples to stay together when both are willing to work on their marriage with the help of the Holy Spirit!

Forgetting to Remember

In the center of a far away village, I am told, stands a huge white monument placed on a concrete slab. It is very impressive. But if you walk around the base, you will find no inscription. If you ask any of the citizens, no one seems to know why the monument was erected. Old-timers can’t remember, and the young were never told.

Strange- a monument to nothing! A memorial that has no memory or meaning whatsoever! Life is short, and our memory is even shorter. We come into this world, and in a few short years we leave this world, and within two or three generations our name is no longer remembered.

Formerly known as “Decoration Day,” Memorial Day was first enacted to honor both Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War, a war that tragically divided this nation, and still does to this day in some circles. But today, so it seems, the true meaning of Memorial Day has become lost in a flurry of activities to best suit the pleasures of the masses. To a large segment of the population, the significance of Memorial Day is that it is the kickoff to summer vacation.

I have visited many memorials. In a town where we pastored in southern Oregon, there is the old pioneer cemetery that reached back into the wild west days. We visited the World War II memorial in Manila that told the story of a terrible war that took place all over the globe. We have stood before several “walls” with thousands of names engraved- men and women who sacrificed their lives for freedom in Vietnam, Korea, and other places.

But I find the most unusual memorial of all in scripture. It is a memorial that has endured time like no other memorial. More people have visited and continue to visit this memorial than any other in history. It is not made of marble. Nor is it made by human hands. But it is so real and so meaningful and brings so much joy that often times it is not even looked upon as a memorial, but a feast- a celebration of life!

Jesus admonishes us to not forget to remember. He says, “Each time you drink this cup, remember Me. What you must solemnly realize is that every time you eat this bread and every time you drink this cup, you reenact in your words and actions the death of the Master. You will be drawn back to this meal again and again until the Master returns. You must never let familiarity breed contempt” (I Corinthians 11:23-24).

I eagerly look forward to the next time I observe this celebration of life with fellow believers. I will intentionally remember all my Lord has done for me. That will be the real Memorial Day!

Emotional IQ Part 2

We all have feelings. In fact, for a lifetime we have had people telling us how we should feel or not feel. It started when I was little: “Larry, you can stop crying now- big boys don’t cry.” Or, if I got caught with my hand in the cookie jar, I could count on hearing, “Larry, you should be ashamed of yourself!” And, later on, if I allowed my feelings to get hurt by someone, invariably I would hear, “Don’t feel bad Larry, I was just kidding.”

Feelings are neither right or wrong

In fifty years of ministry, I have observed many marriages where one partner will be upset or even angry because the other partner feels a certain way, not counting the fact that feelings are neither right or wrong. There is no morality to feelings. Obviously, how we react to our own feelings or another person’s feelings might be right or wrong, but feelings are just feelings, and they may abruptly change within a very short amount of time!

Feelings are so much a part of us, that our feelings are at the heart of good communication. Couples who never talk about each other’s feelings on important issues are headed for trouble. Likewise, couples who do not empathize with each other’s feelings, even though they may not agree with the other’s feelings, are headed for hurt and disappointment in their relationship.

Good communication in our marriage is being able to ask ourselves, “Can I be mature enough and responsible for allowing my spouse to express their feelings simply because that’s the way they feel?” In other words, I must choose to let my spouse express their feelings honestly without a “put-down,” or criticism, or telling them, “you shouldn’t feel that way.” This, of course, requires creating a place of safety. If I am standing by with a bulldozer ready to tell her why she shouldn’t feel the way she does, then the conversation is over! Feelings are neither right or wrong, so even though my wife may feel different than I do, by allowing her to express her feeling without road blocks will not only enhance our relationship but will bring a love bond between us that is absolutely amazing.

Emotional IQ Part 1

She had been an effective leader in our church for many years. But as she came into my office that day, I could tell she was deeply troubled as she announced that she and her husband were leaving the church. After what seemed hours of probing, she finally revealed her reasons for leaving. The previous Sunday my wife happened to pass her in a very crowded foyer and didn't stop to greet her. As tears were running down her face there in my office, she added, "and she didn't even smile, and that really hurt my feelings!"

Why did this lady's feelings really get hurt?

She allowed a negative thought to trigger a negative feeling. She thought that the pastor’s wife was "aloof" that day because she had walked by without giving this lady attention. This lady assumed my wife was thinking she was somehow better than others. However, if this woman had "taken her thought captive"; according to 2 Corinthians 10:5, she would have realized that she had actually been hugged by the pastor's wife on numerous occasions. It is often negative thoughts that spark negative feelings.
The truth is the pastor's wife could in no way hurt this lady's feelings. That’s why we call them “my feelings.” I am in charge of my own feelings. It's my choice as to what hurts them. You don't control me. I can choose to have my feelings hurt by something you do, but you cannot hurt my feelings.
Perhaps this woman was seeking extra love and attention that day, and when she didn’t receive it, she found my wife to be at fault, and the lady became "the victim." According to psychologists, sometimes a person desires the feeling of being a martyr for his or her own sake, out suffering or persecution because it either feeds a need or a desire to avoid responsibility.

You hurt my feelings” is a phrase we should reconsider using because it simply is not true. Rather it is a confession of our own mistake of allowing someone else to control us.

Healthy leaders will not only be in control of their own feelings and know how to process negative thoughts that spark negative feelings, but they will also keep from blaming others for hurting their feelings.

Here's a question: Do I let my feelings dictate my actions, or do I process my thoughts and feelings in a responsible way?

What's on Your Mind Today?

It is not the event that impacts my life, it is the meaning I put on the event that impacts my life.

Have you ever sat down for a few minutes to think about what you are thinking about? We have been told that the average person thinks anywhere from 12,000 to 50,000 thoughts a day. I think that is some pretty heavy duty thinking! Psychologists also tell us that most of our thoughts are turned into “self-talk,” which means that we are telling ourselves a lot of stuff every day! The question is, is it the truth?

Most of our thoughts are triggered by today’s media, which should give us a clue that perhaps some of what we are telling ourselves is not the truth.

Proverbs 23:7 says “as a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” This is not just another metaphor. Scientists have discovered that the physical heart that faithfully pumps blood through our bodies actually has a part in our thinking process. In fact, there is a new science called Neurocardiology which is the study of how the heart and the brain work together.

Here’s the reason why our thoughts are so powerful: What we think will always determine our behavior. We think a thought, the thought triggers certain emotions, and our emotions push our behavior either negatively or positively.
For example, When I sit across the table from a spiritual icon- a man of great faith, I might entertain this thought- “I am inferior compared to this guy.” If I think that thought long enough, pretty soon I will begin to feel inferior. And when I feel inferior, I will soon begin to act inferior, which will reinforce the thought that I am inferior.

So I have to remind myself often, It is not the event that impacts my life, it is the meaning I put on the event that impacts my life.

A lady who attended the church where a friend of mine was the pastor got upset about something in the church. She promptly marched into the pastor’s office to give the pastor a ‘piece of her mind.’ She proceeded to rip him up one side and down the other, then shouted, “you are nothing but a Beelzebub!” She then walked out of the office slamming the door behind her.
Needless to say, my friend drove home from the office that day feeling wounded in his spirit and somewhat depressed. He expressed how this lady’s words and actions caused him to think he was a failure as a pastor.

He was almost home when a thought hit him: “I’m just like Jesus! He too was rejected and despised (Isaiah 53:3) and even accused of drawing his healing power from Beelzebub, the prince of devils! (Matthew 12:24) My friend pulled the car over to the curb, raised his hands in worship, thanking the Lord that he had so much in common with Christ. And when he arrived home, the depression was gone.

Proverbs 4:23 tells us to “keep and guard our heart with all vigilance and above all that you guard, for out of it flow the springs of life (Amp).

Here’s a question: Do you allow negative thought patterns to get you down, or do you recognize the lies for what they are and put a different meaning on the event?

It's About Time!

There is one thing we can do with time: Manage it! A healthy pastor has a healthy attitude toward time.

The alarm clock had served him well. For the past 45 years that alarm clock faithfully catapulted the longshoreman out of bed before dawn so he could get to work on time. But this day would be the last time. As a new retiree, he had one more task to perform. He ceremoniously placed the alarm under the 90-ton press at work and then walked away.

No matter what your attitude is about time, the Bible tells us “The length of our days is 70 years or 80 if we have the strength” (Psalm 90:10).

That is only 840 months, 3,640 weeks, 25,550 days, 613,200 hours, 36,792,000 minutes and 2,207,520,000 (two billion, two hundred seven million, five hundred twenty thousand!). That sounds like a lot of seconds, but not really when you consider thirty seconds have already passed just quoting these numbers!

While the length of our lives may vary, time is a resource every person in the world shares the same amount of on a daily basis. Time is nonrenewable. I don’t have more time to work with than you do. Time cannot be stored. One cannot slow it down, speed it up, hold it up, divide it, or give it up. Money cannot buy time, and as much as we would like, we cannot change it.

There is one thing we can do with time: manage it! A healthy pastor has a healthy attitude toward time.

Good time management is not my greatest forte. I have had to work harder at being a good steward of the time God has given me. However, I have learned several things through years of pastoring that have been very helpful to me.

I work best from a daily list. And I try to tackle my most important tasks first.
I make a weekly plan. I plan a schedule. It has been proven that every minute spent in planning saves as many as ten minutes in execution. But I also allow for interruptions. And when that happens, I remind myself that I am in the people business, and building relationships are important.
I am learning to turn off Social media during work times. I actually lived in a time when “social” was something you did face-to-face. In person. So like other things in my busyness, I have a specified time to be “internet social”, just because that seems to be where everyone is hanging out these days. And, if they want me to see a picture of the lovely spaghetti they are having for dinner, that is fine with me- but only in that specified time block!
I am learning to say “no”.
I have learned that I am not a good multi-tasker. In fact, recent studies have found that no one is really a good multi-tasker because something usually suffers in the process.
I work hard to overcome my habit of procrastination.

A Healthy Pastor Manages Time well, and that includes taking time for family and for self!

What's In Your Wallet? Part 2

Freedom from debt is not owing more than I have in cash or assets and not having any bills past due.
For as early as I can remember, my mom and dad taught me the most important principle of biblical finances: For every dollar I earned, ten cents belonged to God, and I was to faithfully honor God with that ten percent every week.

When we were young pastors, struggling financially, we had some needs that were going to cost more money than what we had in the bank. We decided to take a loan out from God. We simply would not pay our tithes for several months, then we would try to make it up later. We decided after the first two months we would never do that again!

It started with a complete break-down with our car. Then there was some unexpected plumbing repairs. Then there was a tooth that needed fixing. There were other instances, enough to be very obvious to us that we should not have “borrowed” from God. Since that time, we have learned to trust God to take care of our needs and the tithes have always come out of our paycheck before our bills, and there have never been any regrets!

Financial freedom can be defined this way: “Freedom from debt is not owing more than I have in cash or assets and not having any bills past due. Romans 13:8 (NLT) tells us to “pay all your debts, except the debt of love for others, You can never finish paying that! If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill all the requirements of God’s law.”

There are three basic factors of financial freedom: First, Our giving. We give God our tithes and offerings. Malachi 3:10 instructs us to “bring the tithes into the storehouse…” However, we also give to those in need. Proverbs 19:17 (MSG) says, “Mercy to the needy is a loan to God, and God pays back those loans in full.” And, we are to give to Christians as the Holy Spirit prompts. Romans 12:13 tells us to “help needy Christians; be inventive in hospitality.”

The second factor of financial freedom is in our receiving. Receiving funds comes through our diligent labor (Romans 12:11), creative resourcefulness, (Proverbs 31:13), and provisions in answer to prayer. Philippians 4:6 (TEV) tells us, “Don’t worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking Him with a thankful heart.”

Finally, the third factor of financial freedom is in our spending. Healthy pastors know how to manage their money wisely. And, managing money requires building sales resistance. Proverbs 20:14 (MSG) tells us, “The shopper says, ‘that’s junk- I’ll take it off your hands,’ then goes off boasting of the bargain.” Managing money also requires us to be prompt in meeting our financial obligations.

For years, I have dreamed of winning the Lottery. Especially when the figure gets to be over a hundred million. Then someone pointed out that in order to win, I must first buy a lottery ticket (I have never had that experience!). And then my friend pointed out, “Larry, once you buy the lottery ticket, the odds of you winning the lottery are 1 in eighteen million! On second thought, I think I like simply trusting the Lord to meet my needs.

Heres a question: Do you manage your money according to scripture, or does your money manage you?

What's In Your Wallet?

…it started an unprecedented faith walk for us, because we learned tight if we would follow biblical economics and simply handle our finances according to God’s instructions, He will take care of us in every way.
The tiny congregation of twelve people was considering us to be their new pastors. After a two hour interrogation, children included, we received a unanimous vote and quickly made the move to the small town nestled in the southern Oregon hills.
This was my first church. I knew the salary would be small compared to the position of youth pastor I had held in a larger church, but during the “inquisition,” I failed to ask what the salary would be. At the start of my first Board meeting, one of the deacons said, “pastor, you probably want to know what your salary is. We pay the bills from the Sunday morning offering, then you get what’s left. Last Sunday that was $10.” I didn’t sleep well that first night in the parsonage, but I prayed a lot!
Our first Sunday at the Church, one of the deacons stood at the beginning of the service and said, “I think that we should pray that pastor Steller gets a job.” And they prayed. However, Just before my sermon that morning, I said this: “I appreciate your concern for us. But with all due respect, we do have a job. We have a town to win to Jesus, and that in itself is going to be a full-time job. I do not have an aversion to secular work, but here is the deal. If you will bring your tithes when you come to church, my family and I will do the same, and let’s just see what God will do!”
During our time there, God worked miracles. People came to know the Lord! We grew to love those people and they learned to love us. The church began to grow. We started a youth center for the town’s kids. Our own bills were paid on time. The church bills were paid on time. Farmers brought meat and produce to us and we prospered in every way!
One day a friend visited us from Portland. I took him on a tour of the town and the church, which didn’t take much more than about ten minutes. He loved what he saw and was inspired by our adventure and our dream for that place. But he didn’t get it. He said to me, “You know, Larry, if I had a million dollars, I would put it in the bank and live off the interest, then I would do what you do.
"The difference between my friend and myself is found in the words of Jesus: “If you decide for God, living a life of God-Worship, it follows you don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion- There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.” (Matthew 6:24-33 MSG)
That was all nearly 50 years ago. But it started an unprecedented faith walk for us, because we learned that if we would follow biblical economics, and simply handle our finances according to God’s instructions, He will take care of us in every way.
By the way, since my mistake of not asking what the salary was going to be, I still have not asked that question when churches have considered us for the pastorate. Why” Because we have something far better than a million dollars in the bank to draw interest from. We have a track record with God. Since He has never left us hanging upside down, He won’t start now!