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We are very happy to be of any service we can be to those who are called into some kind of leadership in Messianic home fellowships. You will find many articles of interest here on our site, and hope this gathering of titles in one place here will be of help for you to access them.
Originally, I had intended to limit these articles to just those in leadership. As I observed how things play out in our own community and elsewhere, it has seemed important that everyone be aware of these issues, rather than just those in leadership.
There are many concerns and fears for people who are looking for teachings and any kind of community connection. Previous unpleasant and even abusive relationships have made many very apprehensive about any kind of commitment. This is true both for those who have come into a Torah study group or community and for those who have been in leadership positions in such a group.
As you may have already seen in the article about calling and ordination, I see that there is a great deal of confusion over what constitutes “real” authority. This confusion has hampered and waylaid the spiritual growth and maturity of many, sadly.
There is a distinction between those in leadership and those who come to be under that leadership in the approach to concerns. However, it has seemed to me that since there is such confusion over what constitutes authority and leadership, it is appropriate for those considering what kind of leaders are trustworthy to also have the same information to help in their discernment process.
I further note that there are different giftings related to teaching. Some people are primarily gifted as teachers while others are gifted primarily as shepherds. Teachers shepherd and shepherds teach but the skills necessary are not the same and not always interchangeable. Thus, even though people may "sit" under good teachers, this does not automatically translate to their ability to apply what they have learned.
In recent months, I have heard several people comment that they no longer even want to gather with others out of fear that they may not be who they appear to be. Sometimes it is because they have gathered with others and found the relationships just too difficult. As a result they retreat to their own homes and whatever teachings they can obtain through various media.
This is a great tragedy. Gaining knowledge is important yet to do so outside the context of relationship is not consistent with Torah principles. It prohibits the process of iron sharpening iron and the growth that we all so deeply need as we prepare ourselves for Messiah’s return. This is the subject of the Messy Expectations series.
I also see the existence of “reluctant shepherds” as those who are called into service but have been burned by the behaviors of those they tried to serve. Assistance to determine what is a “normal” kind of issue and what is “abnormal” is the focus of the Clues for Shepherds PowerPoint. I hope that this will encourage those who have had such bad experiences to find a new clearer vision and restoration and healing in themselves so they can move forward in their calling.
Though people have need of a shepherd, more often than not they resist the shepherding/mentoring process. This too, is a tragedy. I believe it is directly related to personal vulnerabilities from past experiences on both the giver and the recipient of such care. Though I understand the personal reaction to pull back and stay home, I do not believe this is the YHWH honoring solution.
As you read through the various materials on our site that relate to relationship and roles, we believe that you will find concepts and experiences that you recognize, along with some suggestions for more effective responses. If you find that you would like to discuss these issues and obtain some personal support, I am available through my coaching practice for consultation. You may reach me through the info on our contact page or by emailing me at Barbara @ Christian-Transitions.com (Remove the spaces when you enter the address.)
This list is not exhaustive but an ongoing list of what is available and I will add to it as time permits. Please consider these materials as part of our effort to stay with the Body of Messiah in exhortation and encouragement toward becoming all that we have been called to be, whatever role that might be.
Watching and praying in Messiah,
Barbara L. Klika, MSW
March 20, 2013
Building up an Army of Worshippers (When you don't have Musicians every week) by Barbara L. Klika, MSW, Personal Coach, Undershepherd
Clues For Shepherds (August 2011) by Barbara L. KLika, MSW, Undershepherd
How Does Division Destabilize and Destroy Torah Communities? (September 2011) by Barbara L. Klika, MSW, Undershepherd - in concert with all SAM community members
"Maturity" and "Accountability" are NOT in the Bible (December 2011) by Barbara L. Klika, MSW, Undershepherd, Set Apart Ministriest, Inc.
Spiritual Abuse: Leadership Authority and Accountability Patterns (October 2008) by Barbara L. Klika, MSW, Personal Life Coach
What Shepherds Need to Know Series (June & December 2009) by Barbara L. Klika, MSW, Personal Life Coach, Undershepherd & Janell Schroeder, B.B.A., Elder
A non-profit organization dedicated to the betterment of our community through committed volunteers and their generous spirit. Established in 1974, our organization strives to bring people from all walks of life together with a focus on contribution to society, the development of our region and the overall progress of the entire population. We invite you to join us in our efforts to create a complete, capable and caring community.