Saturday, October 18, 2014

A possible future for Mark Driscoll, just being a member of Mars Hill and not being a pastor for at least five years

Thank you for being a wonderful church family.

Today, we are blessed with lead pastors who love Jesus and the people He gave His life for. These men faithfully serve the Mars Hill family.

While I’m still young, I suspect when I’m old I’ll be known for many things—some good, and some not so good. But I hope that the longer God leaves me on this earth, the more I’ll be known for one thing—that I loved Jesus and His Church, the Church He promised the gates of Hell would not prevail against. I may be an author, a speaker, and a thought-provoker; but in the deepest recesses of my heart, I’m a local church pastor, and that’s what I want to give the rest of my life for.

Nearly two months later Mark Driscoll has resigned from being a pastor at Mars Hill Church. 

Mark Driscoll may believe that resigning is what is best for Mars Hill and it may be, but the problem is that the problems at Mars Hill are more than just Mark Driscoll.  We're looking at an entire corporate culture that needs reform and may simply die.  But it doesn't have to.  Here's a thought experiment, a way for Mark Driscoll to stay out of ministry for a while, get his bearings, and consider a new path.  Stay at Mars Hill ... 

but just as a member. 

Driscoll has said for years that he was never a member of a church before starting Mars Hill Church now might.  If Driscoll knows he may have made an idol of success maybe he should spend some time truly being a nobody within Mars Hill, not just a Nobody Trying to Tell Everybody About Somebody who couldn't even be bothered to credit Denver Moore with the catchphrase. 

It could be amazing, right?  Driscoll could get a clearer sense of what the church he has fashioned is like for the rank and file, for the tithing peon.  Don't go to be a preacher or a teacher or a pastor anywhere else. Maybe get some biblical counseling from one of the biblical living pastors.  Maybe join a Redemption Group.  Take the time to be on the receiving end of what the bottom-dwellers get to be part of. 

If Driscoll doesn't try to transition into leading anything in any fashion for several years and just stays at Mars Hill as a member he can show that he's willing to submit to spiritual authority, and how. 

Spend two or three years (at least) maybe more like five years (since in his reverse-engineering your life phase he was into five year plans like a member of the Politburo!).  Retire altogether from public ministry.  See a therapist, er, biblical counselor.  Don't leave Mars Hill, which could go bankrupt if it's still supposed to pay out severance packages to both Driscoll and Turner. 

Driscoll now has a chance to be a member of a church he's no longer a pastor of.  He'll get a chance to really trust in the Lord and see if Mars Hill survives without him as the legal president.  If Mark Driscoll truly loves Mars Hill as it is and not just as the vision of what it's supposed to be in his head then the surest way to prove his love of Mars Hill would be to stay resigned from ministry and be a regular tithing guy who is just part of a local church. 

John the Baptist said (John 3:30NIV) "He must become greater; I must become less." Driscoll stepping away from ministry for at least five years (if not forever) would be a powerful, sacrificial way of living out this axiom.  It would be powerful because Driscoll would disappear and leave us all an opportunity to see if this thing called Mars Hill Church has really been founded on the rock that is Jesus Christ or on the persona of Mark Driscoll. 

Perhaps we can close with an old tweet from none other than ...
Healthy transitions in relays & leadership come down to the handoff. Train up your successor.
Don't chuck the baton & storm off the track.
1:20 PM - 17 Jun 13
So ... who has Driscoll trained to take his place?