Pastors, I want to suggest to you that something you’ve been seeing as a problem is actually a great opportunity. That something—complaints.
You might think that complaining in churches is a new phenomenon, a product of our consumeristic, navel-gazing culture of narcissism. (And, to be sure, much of it is.) But in the first century church, Luke tells us, “A complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution” (Acts 6:1 ESV).
The early church leaders, unlike many of us, recognized the opportunity within the problem. So instead of merely attempting to troubleshoot everything themselves, the apostles turned the problem around. We see this problem, too, they said to the church. And what are you going to do about it? The apostles didn’t take care of the ministry problem for them. They turned it back to them. And in so doing, they catalyzed ministry in the church.