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It all boils down to status....
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Post Friends for Life Pedro
Mike

We have been your friends since our youth camp days and always will be. Do we see you or talk to you very often, no, but we love you just the same. I'm sorry that you feel that your "Status is gone" but God doesn't have a section for "status" in heaven and I don't feel that he is pleased with that sort of thing. Remember that the "ground is level at the foot of the cross". "Status" is a man made thing.

Just know that you and Stephanie are loved and you always will be.
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8/24/11 10:12 am


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Post Truman Here Truman Smith
Mike how are you doing after the treatment in the hospital??? Did things go well and are you feeling better ?? Gloria and I are praying for you and your family . Mike Gloria has a saying that has helped many and it is , " It is more inportant what God knows about you than what people think about you 'Hope you have a rapid recovery. God Bless . T Acts Enthusiast
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8/24/11 9:31 pm


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Post Re: Sorry I lit this fuse and ran away but I've been recover chainrattler
Mike Burgner wrote:
from a kidney stone attack. Today I'm off work and got plenty of time to surf the net. Smile

1. To those of you who say it will happen with secular jobs as well I 100% disagree. I've worked for 2 other HVAC companies in this area and still today have people calling me to have lunch, or just to check on me and see what's up. I've been treated better by heathens in the HVAC industry than my colleagues in the COG what I was born in.
2. I tried to stay connected. I went to the campmeetings and ministers retreats after the fact. I've been on both sides of the fence. Those of you who haven't been in the shoes of us whose ministry status has changed and not pastoring or holding a ministry position any longer can't understand how weird it is.
[] You dread going to a state meeting because you dread the question, "what are you doing now? or Where are you pastoring now." Then you've got to come up with some answer you're not ashamed of like, "I'm in transition, or I'm between assignment, or I'm taking some time off."
[] Crazy stuff goes through your head like "This pastor doesn't want me here at his church, he's afraid I'm gonna steal some of his people and plant a new church." Then you get to the point of not even wanting to go to church, find a big church where nobody knows you, or go to church outside the COG.
[] When you attempt to be around other ministers your mind plays games on you and voices inside your head tell you things like "They think I've sinned. They think I'm a trouble-maker. They think I'm a rebel, a loser, a horrible Christian for not being in the ministry. They're wondering what's wrong with me.

I'm being very open, honest, and transparent here. Those of you who've been in my shoes hopefully can add your inside to the mind games, etc. The point is you get to the place where you just quit going to the meetings, because its not the same any longer. You're still a minister. You still have credentials, but your status overrides all of that.


A lot of people come on here and say "Pastors are held to a higher standard, that's just the way it is." Well, from where I sit, when comparing Christians with unbelievers I think they should be held to a higher standard than unbelievers. Heard a woman say once that the Church should be like Cheers, a place where everyone knows your name and is glad you came.

Unfortunately, a lot of churches are synagogues of Satan rather than local expressions of the family of God. By synagogue of Satan I mean that they are filled with people who look down their noses at you in critical judgment rather than loving acceptance. People so concerned with how they look on the outside to other people that they cannot afford to be seen with you because it will effect their status with the other accusers who are watching them.
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8/25/11 6:15 am


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Post I can relate brother... Jamie Noel
When I went through my difficult times with the COG, I had "friends" who would no longer even speak to me. In fact, at the last General Assembly, one man, whom I grew up knowing, worked in ministry and youth camps together, told my father that he just could not be seen with me anymore because he didn't want to tarnish his reputation......REALLY????

You find out who your friends truly are. I thank God for friends like Todd Martin,Tim Oldfield, and Bob Wilson, who never cut the friendship off. Even if they didn't agree with my actions or decisions, they were still friends.

I would get calls, go to lunch, get emails, etc. THEY were my friends.

Jamie
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8/25/11 11:25 am


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Post Travis Johnson
Mike, there is some truth to what you say. If things are going well for you, more people want to be around you. If things aren't going well, not as many people do.

Additionally, some people use other people in utilitarian ways, unfortunately.

At the end of the day, there has to be a settling inside of us that we are OK with who we are as opposed to getting caught up in a Looking Glass Self-type of cycle where our identity becomes less of who we know we are and more of who people think we are.

On my worst days, days where I felt substantial parts of the world was against me, here's what I came to know:

1. God believes in me. He sometimes uses friends and strangers and even bad situations to let me know that.

2. My wife is an amazing woman. She loves and believes in me. She's got my back and I've got hers.

3. My kids love and need their Dad and I need them.

4. I have some friends who have been in proximity to the core of who I am long enough that they know how to rattle me, lift me, correct me, and encourage me appropriately. And, when they don't do it appropriately, love helps me see over the counter and know who they are and what they're about. Sometimes, I've been down on myself like you are presently and they've come along and given me a loving kick in the pants and told me to stop feeling sorry for myself and simply BE who God has called me to be, regardless of what things look like in the moment or season I'm in.

Brotherman, you have what it takes to make it through. But, you have to go through it...even if it takes a while. And, if it doesn't happen through the COG or through church planting or through being appointed as a pastor, that doesn't change WHO you are. Rest in that. And, in God's timing, the rest will work itself out. And, the things you think HAVE to get worked out, may turn out to be not so important...or in the end, of such little consequence that later on, you wonder why it pressed you so (not to diminish your challenge).

Much love to you...praying God's best...and for the guts to press through!

TJ
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8/25/11 3:58 pm


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Post The Test renewal
They were not your friends..They never were..How do I know?

Simply this>>

Prov 17:17 A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born in adversity.

This is the test for friends..

Did they pass the test?
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8/25/11 5:47 pm


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Post Mike, we don't know each ... Mat
Mike, we don't know each other, but here's a different view to consider. In ministry and denominational life we have "un-written" expectations that govern the course of our lives. Some will go the staff route, perhaps starting a Youth Pastor, and then expanding to serving on committees and in camps, and maybe move "up" into state level ministry (going from smaller to larger states). Others go the Pastoral route, with either a small first church or as Assistant Pastor at a larger church. Going from smaller to larger, until they are either appointed to a large church, or build one if they got that gift. So it goes, writher minister or missionary, there is a "path" that can guide our lives until the day we retire and tell people what we were and where we went.

The good news, you're off the path. You are not bound by convention or expectation, not by history or former hopes. You are now God's "free-agent" and while your contemporaries judge their success or failure in life by what they think they should achieve, you my friend are free to truly find some "fresh & new" anointing. That's not just a sermon title that you will preach in the same old four-walled box of a church, you can find it because you've had an "off the path" experience. Let your old "playmates" strive for those positions and titles; you are not bound by that thinking anymore. Do what you feel God is leading you to do, wherever he leads you to do it.

Your sadness is from thinking you have fallen behind and lost out of where you thought you should be by now. Your joy will be finding where God wants you to be and realizing the great purpose he has for your ministry.

Mat

PS Mike, you ever notice that it the guys that get off the path the come and speak to the conference full of guys that are stuck on the path?
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8/25/11 6:15 pm


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Post "HOPE" helping hand
You sound very disappointed and rightly so. I pray you get a handle on it lest it turn into Clinical Depression.
It sounds like "who you are' is too tied into "what you do". Being a COG Pastor/Minister is not who you are. You don't get your self esteem from Ray Hughs...It comes from relationship with God.
This isn't the worst thing in life that can happen. I know. When the worst that can happen in your life...happens and you don't die. You wish you had...you spend half your time crying for 6 mo's and 2 yrs later the sunlight still hurts your eyes. You still believe in Jesus but you are afraid to trust Him...and then years later you have a love affair with the Lord and realized that everything that has happened in your life has happened for a reason. In my case it was to teach meto be of service to others and to God...now I find fulfillmemt in Him wherever and whatever I'm doing.
I don't regret or hate the past or even place blame on others...It's not important anymore.
What I have found is that when I am unhappy and blaming situations and people...I am actually blaming God. When I forgave God and myself and started courting the Lord like He was my lover a marvelous thing happened...no matter the circumstance...I can look for some good in it and what I'm supposed to learn from it; who I can help in it. The worse it is, the more I have to get out of myself and into others.
God Bless my new friend and I will pray for you and I know H hears my prayers...He knows who I am and He knows who you are too.
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8/26/11 3:49 am


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Post DrDuck
(quote)"I've been treated better by heathens in the HVAC industry than my colleagues in the COG what I was born in. "

I had decided not to make a reply to this thread since I don't like to sound bitter; but this statement stirred memories. I have never experienced the kind off trash treatment from job friends as from some supposed brothers and sisters in churches and State Offices.
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8/26/11 8:31 am


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Post Randy Johnson
I think the last few replies on this thread exposes something that may be as equally important as trust and financial transparency, and that is a genuine manifestation of the fruit of the Spirit in our relationships with one another from the highest to the lowest position in the Church of God or any other church organization.

For some reason, it seems that the higher we raise the bar for our so-called "holiness standards" and "distinctives" (not just Pentecostal distinctives but denominational distinctives as well); the more we give ourselves a pass on being rude, demeaning, critical and judgmental of others. It's almost as if there is an inverse relationship between how "holy" we consider ourselves to be and how compassionate and considerate we are of others.

Why is this is and what can we do to change it? It has to start with the ministers I believe before we will see it among our congregations.
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8/26/11 10:28 am


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Post At the AG General Counsel ... Mat
At the AG General Counsel held here in Phoenix earlier this month, their General Superintendent (Dr. Wood) said the "...good old days were not as good as some would remember." He told of the time a deacon in the church punched his father (who was an evangelist) in an effort to convey his desire for the evangelist to leave. Dr. Wood said there was “often a disconnect between the Fruit of the Spirit and the Gifts of the Spirit back in the ‘Good Old Days’.”

Today we are more sophisticated in how we “punch” and dismiss one another. We just throw words. Someone said, “Words contain no stones, but when they are thrown, they have the power to break heart, spirit and bone!”

Mat
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8/26/11 2:12 pm


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Post Quiet Wyatt
Randy Johnson wrote:

For some reason, it seems that the higher we raise the bar for our so-called "holiness standards" and "distinctives" (not just Pentecostal distinctives but denominational distinctives as well); the more we give ourselves a pass on being rude, demeaning, critical and judgmental of others. It's almost as if there is an inverse relationship between how "holy" we consider ourselves to be and how compassionate and considerate we are of others.


Perhaps that is true, but aren't you being critical and judgmental in pointing this out? Very Happy
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8/26/11 2:54 pm


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Post Thanks for all the kinds words... Mike Burgner
My purpose in posting this wasn't to solicit anything. I appreciate the words of encouragement that several of you offered. The things said on this thread have really encouraged and uplited me. Very Happy
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8/27/11 6:53 pm


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Post mytimewillcome
Mike, man up and get to work for the gospel. Done. Plain and simple. Golf Cart Mafia Underboss
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8/27/11 9:11 pm


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Post redbackphd
What A Friend We Have In Jesus Member
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8/30/11 8:57 am


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Post still here mike carson
Hey Mike you were one of the first guys I met after coming to Tennessee. You were cordial with me and we became good acquaints. Still feel the same for you. I have recently moved back to Florida and i still believe in you. We all go through those moments but know there are guys that still care in the state. Hang in there you are paused for power. Newbie
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8/5/14 8:00 pm


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Post bonnie knox
Do you mean poised? [Insert Acts Pun Here]
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8/5/14 9:23 pm


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Post mike carson
Lol possibly both. Sometimes we go through a tenure of waiting then there are times we are poised. Newbie
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8/6/14 4:24 pm


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