Well, we have decided to step down from ministry and leave the church. It has become clear that we are pulling in different directions than that of the ministry staff, and that we believe fundamentally different things about worship and the role of music in the church. I would like to drive a culture change in worship but feel like I'm the only one, so both my husband and I feel we can no longer effectively minister there. And of course we want to be in a church where we can minister.
Even though this has been a lengthy and agonising decision, we both feel firm and clear about it. We are sad but trusting in God. We do have a sense of God bringing us to this point.
We would appreciate prayer at this time, especially for handing over music ministry to others (who??) before we leave, and for God to guide us to a new church home.
Steffie, I know your pain (as well as many others here at TWC). I'm praying you and your husband follow the Holy Spirit's leading in every step. Thanks for keeping us posted. Many blessings to you and your family!!
Melanie Siewert, Christ's Servant
Praying for God's guidance, both for you and your family, and for your church.
Yes - it is very hard when you realize that you and the leadership do not have the same methods, outlook or goals. Our Pastor preached last week on division in the church, and worship is just one area where people can fuss and fight; it is very wearying. My prayer is that God will guide your steps and show you the way...
Just wanted to continue to ask for your prayer, as the process of leaving church is becoming harder. We had a conversation with our senior minister the other week about it, and I basically felt like he made a whole bunch of assumptions about me without first checking with me, insinuated that my feelings are based on my Pentacostal background, and suggested the issues boil down to differences in language. He practically begged us to stay and "work things out" despite the fact we feel we've been trying to do this for the past 9 months. He suggested our reasons for leaving were not good enough and that it "didn't feel right" to him.
I am still grieving but now feeling the sadness shifting to anger. I'm basically becoming bitter. I feel like the church doesn't actually know me at all, hasn't spent any time trying to understand my point of view, they just encourage me to listen to their point of view. They question me only even though the decision is shared between my husband and I. They keep casting doubt on our decision, which is actually unhelpful. Last Sunday I was ministering and ended up in tears on stage behind the keyboard. I feel like it's getting harder and harder to stay.
I'm really hoping some of the folk out there can relate to this :-)
Bottom line: I'm struggling to keep a heart that's pure, humble and Christ-centred in all of this. Please pray for same.
Steffie, I feel for you.
If possible, leave now.
If you have to stay (though your notice period, or until the end of the month, etc.) AVOID being alone with your leadership - if they try to call or pull you aside, demur something like "Do you mind if I call my husband in to hear this?" I suggest this to save your sanity.
Thanks to everyone who prayed.
We have found our new church home (for now) and will be transitioning in the next few weeks. It has become too hard at our old church. We failed to minister last Sunday - emotionally and spiritually, we just didn't feel up to it.
If anyone feels like praying again for us, please pray that God will use our time away from ministry to heal some hurts and minister to us. I feel Him drawing me closer to Him again already.
Continuing to pray for you through the transition, both spiritually and literally.
Praying in agreement with the others and you.