By Billy Graham • June 1, 2004
I hope you won’t focus on the gifts your new pastor doesn’t have, but instead be thankful to God for the gifts he does have. If God has given him the ability to preach, be grateful for that. One of the main reasons we go to church is to hear God’s Word preached.
Remember: Pastors aren’t perfect–even the Apostle Paul. He told one church, “When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom” (1 Corinthians 2:1). Paul, however, had an outgoing and bold personality, and God used this to help him extend the Gospel. His young companion Timothy, on the other hand, was apparently rather shy–but God used his sensitive nature to make him an effective and caring pastor.
Pray for your pastor and do all you can to help him and his family adjust. Make them feel welcome; invite them to dinner or other social events and encourage others to do so also. God brought him to you, and you should accept him as God’s gift to your congregation. The Bible says for us “to respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 5:12).
As a footnote, elsewhere in your letter you mention that your previous pastor had been with you for many years. I know it’s hard not to compare your new pastor to him–but ask God to help you get beyond this and be grateful for your church’s new leadership.