The Kindest Elder I’ve Ever Known

Neal Pollard He was appointed an elder during the Reagan administration. At the very time he was appointed, the congregation was reaching the climax of a very traumatic incident. A man who was a charter attender, but not a member, when Bear Valley began meeting, he has seen every great work this congregation has dared … Continue reading The Kindest Elder I’ve Ever Known

What Preachers Wished All Members Knew About Their Elders

Neal Pollard While there are doubtless men who wear the name “elder” that do not meet the biblical qualifications, many of the church’s greatest heroes and biggest assets are her shepherds. I have been privileged to serve under a total of 21 elders in 26 years of full-time preaching, and what I am about to … Continue reading What Preachers Wished All Members Knew About Their Elders

“I Praise, I Participate, I Proclaim”

Neal Pollard Yesterday afternoon, the Bear Valley eldership stood before us one by one to talk about their priorities both for themselves and for us. They distilled them into five simple words that describe five profound concepts: (1) Worship, (2) Communication, (3) Fellowship, (4) Accountability, and (5) Leadership. They told us that as the religious … Continue reading “I Praise, I Participate, I Proclaim”

Armchair Elders

Neal Pollard He shouts at his TV with a mouthful of Cheetos. "I can't believe you! Four receivers downfield and you throw it behind the line of scrimmage to a man who's double covered! You're pathetic. Must be nice to get millions of dollars to make awful decisions. Where do I sign?" After several additional … Continue reading Armchair Elders

Watching Godly Elders

Neal Pollard We are blessed with seven wonderful elders here! They span in age from 48 to 81, are of varying backgrounds, personalities, and skillsets, but collectively they reflect God’s wisdom for a plurality of godly men shepherding the flock. With the magnitude of the work and workload here, I cannot help but stand in … Continue reading Watching Godly Elders

WHERE ARE THE ELDERS?

Neal Pollard At the hospital, attending a surgery At home, hosting a family or families and getting closer to the sheep Hosting and attending church activities In private meetings with hurting, needy members In meetings together, praying over and discussing the needs of the sheep Spending time with their wives and children, nurturing that needed … Continue reading WHERE ARE THE ELDERS?

What God Does Not Expect Of Elders

Neal Pollard Sermons preached on the qualifications of elders often, rightly, emphasize the importance of selecting men who qualify to serve. In the Lord's church,  covetous, inhospitable, intemperate, cold, imprudent, biblically ignorant, pugnacious, and newly-converted men (among others) have been appointed to that important work who should not have been. That hurts the local church! Many … Continue reading What God Does Not Expect Of Elders

The Shepherd Of The Sheep

Neal Pollard “That grass is greener,” so he thought, The sheep who wandered from the fold Watching carefully the shepherd caught The wanderer, so soon in the overseer’s hold. The roaring waters so dangerously near Forms a hazard for the trembling herd But the herdsmen is wise, his vision is clear With his guidance their … Continue reading The Shepherd Of The Sheep

L.E.A.D.

Neal Pollard When speaking of the work of elders, there are multiple aspects of his work and his life outlined in Scripture.  He is an “elder” (“A person of responsibility and authority in socio-religious matters,” Louw-Nida, 53.77; “being relatively advanced in age, older, old,” BDAG).  He is a “pastor” or “shepherd" (“To care for, provide,” … Continue reading L.E.A.D.

 What It Means to Be An Overseer

Neal Pollard Elders are identified with three broad terms.  As Gary Hampton has put it, those who serve congregations in this honored way should not be offended that the term most often associated with them is the one that identifies them as old.  Not only are they "elders," but they are also "shepherds" and "overseers."  "Shepherd" … Continue reading  What It Means to Be An Overseer