Pastors are sometimes viewed as glitz and glamour/spotlight guys who talk for an hour or two on Sunday. Some are visionary like Andy Stanley. Some are passionate like Louie Giglio. Some are profound like John Piper. Some are simply relevant communicators like Mark Driscoll and Perry Noble. Some are winsome like Pete Wilson. Some have annoying (fake?) smiles like Joel Osteen.
But heres the bottom line. Pastors had better be oxen.
They'd better be able to carry the weight of burdens.
They'd better be able to maintain a straight line as they're moving forward.
They'd better be able to withstand mistreatment.
Because that is what good pastors and leaders do.
But you are not off the hook either.
You had better not muzzle the ox. (1 Timothy 5:18)
Paul is referring most explicitly to paying/taking care of your pastors. So you better be doing that...but there's other muzzles as well. People muzzle leaders by being constantly negative...constantly attacking their flaws or leadership style...constantly undermining their leadership, teaching and vision.
Your pastor is an ox. Fight for the ox to succeed. Don't sit back and muzzle.
(And yes. The ox analogy goes further because I'm big and particularly hairy...I get it.)