Harvest Bible Pastor MacDonald's statement: I 'have wounded others without cause'

 
Updated 1/16/2019 7:53 PM
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  • Harvest Bible Church Senior Pastor James MacDonald is taking a sabbatical from the Rolling Meadows-based church.

    Harvest Bible Church Senior Pastor James MacDonald is taking a sabbatical from the Rolling Meadows-based church. courtesy of Harvest Bible Church

  • Harvest Bible Church Senior Pastor James MacDonald is taking a sabbatical from the Rolling Meadows-based church.

    Harvest Bible Church Senior Pastor James MacDonald is taking a sabbatical from the Rolling Meadows-based church. courtesy of Harvest Bible Church

A letter from Harvest Bible Chapel elders, which was posted Wednesday on the church's website, includes this statement from founding pastor James MacDonald. The letter said MacDonald is "taking an indefinite sabbatical from all preaching and leadership" at the Rolling Meadows church but might continue preaching over the winter at the church in Naples, Florida.

"For a long time I have felt unequal to all but the preaching task at Harvest. I have battled cycles of injustice, hurt, anger, and fear which have wounded others without cause.

I have carried great shame about this pattern in certain relationships that can only be called sin. I am grieved that people I love have been hurt by me in ways they felt they could not express to me directly and have not been able to resolve. I blame only myself for this and want to devote my entire energy to understanding and addressing these recurring patterns.

I have long known and taught it is not about the messenger, it is about the message and I am grateful for a time of extended sabbatical, during which Harvest will be in capable hands. I may continue preaching at the Naples Campus through some of the winter season and have postponed all writing and leadership to begin in earnest now. I will continue this focus as long as it takes and participate wholeheartedly as requested in the process shared above.

Please pray that this welcomed time of sabbatical rest will lead to needed changes in me and a fresh opportunity to reconcile with others in God's time.

Christ is all He promised to be and more … "He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me by still waters. He restores my soul" (Psalm 23:2-3). Please pray for me and Kathy as we step away from the work, so God can do all He wants to do in the worker."

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