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A Tree With Many Branches Has No Answers
  [글쓴이: 은혜포럼 | 작성일:18/06/09(토) ]

There is a saying that goes something like this: “A tree with many branches is more likely to be shaken by the wind.” If a tree has many branches, it will not stay still for even one moment when the wind blows. In the same way, this saying applies to parents. Parents with a lot of knowledge do not go a day without worrying. This is true for families, and it is all the more applicable for the church. When speaking of problems, we can see that various types of problems arise according to how many believers are in the church. Although there are probably more things that are not reported to me, there are so many things that I hear. As a human, I get upset and angered when believers who are now church officers fall because of the basic things and cause problems. In my position as a senior pastor, it does not end with only the various problems of the believers. There are many things I need to resolve when it comes to the big and small works in the church, the many problems amongst the pastoral ministers, and the works I have been entrusted with outside the church. But if I see and discuss all these things as problems, I am left with only days of being shaken.

I originally had a sensitive and detailed personality. This is generally the common characteristic of people who majored in music or art. But despite this, I am also proactive and even a bit hasty when it comes to the things I have planned and thought of. I have strong planning abilities, am very driven, and tend to be quick about everything. Although I have made mistakes that brought about regret and embarrassment, I have received many answers as a pastor. Yet, I have changed so much through the continuous training and grace I have received as I served as an assistant pastor for 9 years and a senior pastor for 12 years. When I think about it, this is true, even despite having my own particular style and personality. However, I am assured that the biggest thing was not breaking away from the Gospel flow and Word flow and receiving guidance.

They say that churches ordinarily grow according to the spiritual level and vessel of the pastor. This is undeniable. I cannot fully agree with this because we cannot consider the growth of a church to be solely quantitative and because this excludes the purity regarding the Gospel of uniqueness that the individual pastor possesses. However, when we look at it simply, it is not an incorrect saying. This is because we can realistically see that pastors’ sermons, mindset, and capabilities all connect to the revival and growth of their churches. Nonetheless, to our regret and shame, our Korean churches presently reside in the megachurches and their disputes and divisions. Both megachurches and dependent churches, respectively in their own ways, are crumbling from various problems and time schedules to the point where unbelievers - with no exceptions - are outwardly mocking them. The crisis of the church is the crisis of the age and the start of disasters. But my heart is heavy for I believe God has given us His warning: He who has ears, let him hear - those who possess the Gospel, not those who simply go in and out of church.

I am not sure exactly when this began. As I went through many trials and errors, and as I overcame the important hardship in my life through my illness, God has changed my personality and nature. The Gospel training and evangelism training I was continuously led in - along with the flow of the Word that I did not lose hold of - have changed me. God’s absolute sovereignty was something that have been instilled in me since a young age, but this became my true confession. I believed in the fact that God is the Word, that He gives the Word, and that He fulfills the Word. Therefore, I came to know that my thoughts that are not the Word and the thoughts that I am the master of are all wrong. I have come to acknowledge that God is right and God’s Word is right. Though I am not complete and though I make mistakes here and there, on a basic level, He had made me think, see, and be led with the Word as the center. Instead of being natured in doing my pastoral ministry based on my feelings, personality, and thoughts, my nature has changed to have the Word as the standard and to confirm and believe in the Word. This did not happen because of a moment’s resolution and will, but this took place without me even realizing it.

I think the pastor’s spiritual standard and vessel is the “eyes to see the problem.” If we see problems as problems, even more problems will arise from there. That does not mean to ignore or distort the problem. Rather, it is to see the problem more accurately. If you deeply look at the revealed problem, hidden problem, long-standing problem, and fundamental problem, you will see that the problem is an answer. This is not merely having a positive mindset. If God is living and if we are indeed a child of God, we can acknowledge that this, too, is inside of God’s absolute sovereignty. This is because we believe that God is Gospelizing and making the church and its believers into evangelists until the day of Christ Jesus. Problems are not problems, but the real problem is not possessing the Word. If we possess the Word, that problem is an answer. It is an opportunity for God to work and the time schedule to see and experience that work. It is a sure answer to experience the fulfillment of the Word, to find God’s plan, to have renewal, and to find God’s different preparation.

There truly are many problems here and there. While being upset, frustrated, and angry, these were the words that came out of my mouth without me even realizing: “They say a tree with many branches is more likely to shake… and it turns out they are right…” But a moment later, I gave another confession. “No, that’s not it. A tree with many branches is more likely to have no answer.” All darkness broke down and my once complicated mind felt refreshed. Though it was only for a moment, I was almost deceived by my old nature. I am assured that all problems are answers because there is a Word that has been given to me towards the church, our believers, evangelism, and missions, and because the Word has surely been given to our church. I need to be concerned not of resolving problems but of God’s plan, His time schedule, and His different preparation. I thank and praise God who has allowed us to know and see the answers disguised as problems, blessings wrapped up as conflicts, and opportunities masked as trials.

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