Since my plane flight last week I have gone through a mountain of emotions and thoughts. My main feeling has been one of shame. Shame before God…shame before my wife…shame before my calling…shame before my church…and shame before a dying world that needed to hear about Jesus…and not Chris Elrod. I wonder how many people are in Hell today because I was more concerned with making me famous…than with making Jesus Christ famous in their life? I wonder how many other people I have hurt or offended? I mostly wonder what kind of an impact Compass Point could have had in Lakeland in the last four years…if their pastor wasn’t running around being an insecure egomaniac?
In one of the first coaching network sessions Perry Noble said that every church is one change away from doubling in size. For many months I have been searching for what that change needed to be at Compass Point. Was it our style, strategy or our leadership structure? Was it how we did Sunday mornings or the flow of the services? Was it leadership development or discipleship? Guess what? It wasn’t any of those things…it was me. The change at Compass Point that was needed was for the Senior Pastor to stop worrying about making anyone famous…except for Jesus Christ!!!
Last Friday I had a pretty emotional day of fasting and praying to God. I spent all day asking for His forgiveness…begging for His guidance…and listening for Him to speak. On Saturday I spent the day going back over my sermon notes…making sure that everything that would be said would point people to Jesus. On Sunday morning I sat in a darkened YMCA bathroom praying for people I had never met…but I knew needed to hear Jesus. Right before the service began one of our Elders prayed over me…I took a final look at my sermon notes…and then headed to the pulpit without them. I wanted the Holy Spirit to tell me what to say…not the pressure of delivering every point I had written down on a piece of paper. Thirty minutes later eight people gave their life to Christ for the very first time…and Chris Elrod was no where in the process.
I love my Lord…I love my wife…I love my church…but today…I love myself a lot less. The voice of insecurity and ego is still there…I’m just doing everything I can not to listen to it. There are still some apologies to be made…there is still much to be learned…there is still a level of humility that I am striving to acheive. Last week was the first steps to a new way of living…a new desire…a new vision…to make Jesus Christ famous. I look forward to tomorrow!