The first chapter in John’s Gospel records the story of Jesus calling a set of brothers to follow him. These brothers were fishermen.
- One of them went on to be the spokesmen of the disciples. The other didn’t.
- One of these brothers was the first to confess that Jesus was the Christ, the Son of God. The other stood by while it happened.
- One of these brothers went on to preach on the day of Pentecost and saw 3,000 people saved. The other was also doing amazing things that day, just not preaching the big sermon.
- One of these brothers went on to lead the church, write inspired Scripture, and have stories told of his martyrdom. The other did miracles and made disciples faithfully.
Peter was the first brother. He’s frequently characterized as a bold, powerful, strong, and notable leader although a little rash and brash at times. Peter is amazing. So is his brother Andrew… Andrews are important too. Andrews are the everyday pastor who leads an everyday church and faithfully leads people to Jesus, disciples them, and cares for the church. Andrews are nobodies and nobodies matter.
1) The vast majority of churches are pastored by Andrews-Types
Most of the people in the world are under the ministry of Andrew-Type pastors. Andrew-Types shepherd most of Jesus’ disciples. Unassuming leaders who help to proclaim the Kingdom’s advance play a vital role in the growth of the church. They are gifted. They are equippers of the saints. They don’t get asked to be on the big stages or TV or radio, but they are doing ministry.
2) The burden of celebrity destroys many faithful men
There are many famous pastors and Christian leaders who have continued to be faithful men of God. I thank God for the men like Billy Graham, John Piper, Tony Evans, and David Jeremiah (and many others). They are famous Peter-Types who live for Jesus and not for their own fame. However, for every one of those guys there are 10 others who started out working hard for the fame of Jesus, their platform expanded, and somewhere along the line something switched and the power of their own celebrity began to control them. I like what the political pundit, James Carville says, “When you become famous, being famous becomes your profession.” I think in many ways that is what has happened to celebrity pastors.
- Sometimes this results in major falls from grace with men drifting into deep sin issues.
- Sometimes their ministry continues and their platform expands, but they are worried about building their kingdom rather than Christ’s.
Faithfulness is a better aim than fame.
3) Contentment is key
I think a lot of the problem is that a lot of Andrew-types want to be Peter-types. They haven’t made peace with the fact that they are special because they’ve been called by a King, not because they’ve been called to be a king. Everyday Pastors matter. We aren’t all Spurgeon or Billy Graham or Matt Chandler. We are nobodies. There is nothing wrong with being nobodies. Nobodies accomplish a lot for the Kingdom. We have to deny ourselves. We have to relinquish our fame desires for the sake of Christ’s fame.
This post is drawn from my book, Proliferate, A Church Planting Strategy for Everyday Churches. If you haven’t already you can pick it up from Amazon (Paperback or Kindle) or Barnes & Noble (Paperback or Nook).