Once when I was consulting with a pastoral search committee, a member of the committee said brightly, “Well, I just know that if we call the right pastor, everyone will get on board.”
I responded, “I am not looking for a job. My teenagers certainly wouldn’t want to move. But if that is the case then I would like to submit my name.”
I quickly added, of course, you are wrong that everyone will get on board with the right pastor. When you call your next pastor, everyone will not get on board. Think about it. Everyone didn’t rally around Jesus. Read John 6:66.
After this many disciples turned back and no longer walked with him.
In a fallen world, moving forward for Christ always means conflict in one way or another. Yet, if the premise is, “If we call the right pastor, everyone will get on board,” how will the congregation interpret the situation when everyone doesn’t get on board? The logical conclusion will be we called the wrong pastor.
It’s good to be optimistic about the future of calling a new pastor. But we cannot be naive in ways that will lead to questioning what may have been the right decision.
See also Expect Conflict.