What is a “little preacher?”
A little preacher is one who may pastor a small, struggling congregation. Perhaps he is in some remote, out of the way location. Or maybe he just doesn’t scrape and bow enough to suit folks. It’s easy to criticize him, because he’s a nobody, and nobody cares about him, anyway. A little preacher doesn’t have the standard of living that other, more successful men have; he can’t make all the meetings, and after he misses a few, nobody misses him anymore. He never did give as much to Missions as everybody else did—what have we lost?
A little preacher’s opinion is neither regarded nor respected; if people leave his church in rebellion to him, so what? He’s just a little preacher. If he were really somebody, he wouldn’t be so little. Don’t worry about the little preacher’s feelings—he’s so little we can ride right over them and no one will know the difference. Little preachers don’t know how to handle people. When renegades leave a little preacher’s congregation, always listen carefully to their side of the story: somewhere in it you will be given a reason to realize just how small the little preacher really is.
Never trust a little preacher. He doesn’t contribute very much to the grand scheme of things. The code of ministerial ethics doesn’t apply to the little preacher; he’s so tiny he falls right through the cracks. Talk all you want to about him—behind his back, to his face, from the conference pulpit—it doesn’t matter; he’s too puny to retaliate. It’s so fun to feel him squish under your feet like a bug. Who needs little preachers?
When you get into his town, never call a little preacher and let him know you’re there. Just contact the biggest tithes-payer in his assembly and spend a few days with him at his house. And have a few prayer meetings while you’re there; this will cement your relationship with a rich renegade, while severing all relationships with the little preacher. You want to cultivate this rebel, because he is bleeding and hurting, and he needs your healing hands (and you, of course, need his healing money). Let the little preacher bleed and hurt, however; never waste precious time and energy trying to recover a useless little preacher.
Little preachers have a way of getting under everybody’s skin. They always want to talk about mystical things like ethics and principles. Don’t they see that they’re little because of these things? Don’t ever make the mistake of letting a little preacher tell his side of the story. He can’t be right, anyway. Or rather, you can’t afford for him to be right. You’ve made too much of an investment in his being wrong to even entertain the prospect that he may be right. After all, he just can’t be right—he’s a little preacher.
There’s one thing you have to give to the little preacher, though: he never makes a big splash about anything! Why? Because he’s so little! He couldn’t if he wanted to. Little preachers are always expendable. Never get worked up about a little preacher’s problems, and never get too close to a little preacher—you might make him feel important, or bigger than he really is. And then, if you get close to him it may look bad on you if you ever have to take, er, that is save, some of his rebels and renegades when he mishandles them and has a personality clash with them. Poor babies! Always be quick to side with the members of his congregation; never align yourself with the little preacher and his pulpit. And be sure to see if the disgruntled church-members are somehow related to the little preacher; little preachers are notorious for not being able to pastor their own kith and kin. If only they weren’t so little!
Never, ever make the fatal mistake of taking the side of a little preacher. Always distance yourself from him. The only people that befriend a little preacher are other little preachers. Let this be a lesson to you. If you are an evangelist, take advantage of the little preacher’s pulpit and swat him down like you would a fly or a mosquito (depending on how little he is). Recognize to the church how great the rich renegades are, but be sure not to disclose all the secret love offerings they’ve been slipping to you; that would be poor taste. All the things that they do for you that they never would do for their little preacher prove beyond dispute that these folks are first-class saints, no matter how much pain and trouble and anguish they have given to their little preacher. Nobody that supports and loves you so much can be all that bad, can they? Why, they give you presents, wash your car, shine your shoes, take you out to eat, fawn over you everywhere you go…. If only that little preacher weren’t such a dim bulb, he could see that you deserve these folks much more than he ever did.
Remember: as you travel down the road of life, always be on the lookout for a little preacher, and run over him if you can. You will have done yourself a great service, and allowed a whole herd of rebels and renegades the freedom they need to run all over the country and kill a bunch of other little preachers.
“A little preacher”
Rev. Tim D. Cormier