By Elizabeth Prata
A clip of former pastor of Saddleback Church Rick Warren made the rounds on Twitter the other day. It was Warren on camera explaining to an off-camera person Warren’s philosophy of ministry. He led the cameraman through his massive library to what he called his “Bucket of Ministry” containing tools and implements. Warren said when people ask him ‘What does a minister do?’ he refers them to his bucket. The staff represents he is a shepherd, the fruit picker reminds him that people grow fruit in their lives, the pitchfork stands for a minister’s cultivation of people, the sword stands for battle; and so on. He lifted the shovel last and said:
Despite having in his Bucket of Ministry a staff, a pitchfork, a sickle, a fruit picker, a fishing rod, a sword, and a tennis racket representing all the different aspects of a pastor’s work, Warren focused on the shovel as the tool representing 90% of his work. And saying straight to the camera without any sense of embarrassment, that the shovel represents his own people’s issues and concerns as excrement.
I thought this was a devastating moment, revealing the heart of this man who is in fact a wolf. Many times, people don’t accept that this man or that woman is a wolf, because they envision the wolf as an ugly, snarling, drooling, feral animal, which it is. But the wolf doesn’t appear as that, he appears as a nice, helpful, kind, soft spoken sheep. The two don’t jibe with the person’s view so they discount the wolf aspect because all they see is smiles and seeming helpfulness. But the mouth reveals all things, which pour from the heart. (Luke 6:45). We must listen, and look deeper when assessing a person claiming to be Christian, especially one who teaches.
I think not enough people understand this is an urgent verse:
“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves.” (Matthew 10:16).
As for Pastor Rick as he is known, it would do him well in my opinion, to heed this verse:
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matthew 6:19-21).
A true, godly, Spirit-raised shepherd is supposed to care for his flock, because the shepherd knows the Lord purchased his people with His own blood. His people are only temporarily given to the shepherd, they are in truth the Great High Priest’s people. Jesus as THE Great Shepherd did not consider his people’s concerns to be excrement. He healed the blind with compassion, He touched lepers, He counseled Martha in kindness, He gently spoke to Nicodemus, addressing his concerns and questions with love. Jesus did not put on one public face to His people, then retire to Capernaum for the night and complain about having to shovel their poop.
Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. (Acts 20:28).
If you have a good pastor, who crafts his own sermons, who shepherds his monies for the betterment of the kingdom and not to accumulate and boast, who loves you with a Gospel love, you have a good pastor. Pray for him.
HOWEVER, I trust little online these days. I always want to verify. Maybe the clip went on with him saying, ‘Just kidding!’ but it was cut off so as to manipulate our view of him. Maybe it wasn’t all it seemed, and his words were cut and edited somehow.
I searched for the whole context and shortly found that it was from a January 2022 hour and 45 minute interview from Carey Nieuwhof of Warren on Youtube, called Rick Warren on Finishing Well, Why Megachurch Pastors Fail, and Lessons Learned Over 42 Years at Saddleback.
It looked like the same one. Warren was in his massive library leading an off-camera person through it, pausing to stop and explain certain objects.
I slid the slider back and forth looking for that part about the Bucket of Ministry and did not see it. Hmmm. Maybe it was edited out. I went back and asked the original tweeter where she got it from, but received no answer after
I decided to search further on my own. Here is what I discovered. Ultimately, I still did not discover the original video containing the context around he aforementioned clip, but I found a blog article about it from people I know to be resourceful. And here’s what else I found.
Google suppresses results.
The Chrome browser using Google to search for +”rick warren” +poop” results are zero. See screenshot below.
It yielded nothing. The interview was just 11 months ago, and I saw the clip of Warren saying it, so why are there NO results? I tried various search terms, but still nothing. Hmmm, let me search on Dissenter browser, which uses DuckDuckGo for its searches, not Google.
Immediately there was a result! It is an article on Disntr, It’s not affiliated with the browser named Dissenter, it’s simply a blog that used to be called Reformation Charlotte renamed Disntr.
So isn’t that interesting, NO results at all on Google but immediately a top result came up using DuckDuckGo.
I decided to google that. I asked Google “Does Google suppress results?” and I received lots of high-minded explanations from Google explaining sincerely that if there are too many results, they limit the number, or if there is potential for identity theft, they limit results. Sounds helpful, eh? Well not so much.
If you ask the same question on DuckDuckGo using Dissenter browser, you get an article at the top of the results from Business Insider, “Google reportedly manipulates search results to hide controversial subjects and favor big business.” With what we now know for certain about Twitter thanks to Elon Musk, its new CEO unveiling the dirty acts of the Twitter execs, then, yes, of course it stands to reason Google does the same.
Don’t be evil, Google, don’t be evil.
Even searching using that exact title on google failed to lead me to the article. It was referenced here and there, but not the blog itself. Below is that article, and a reminder to my dear readers that Google is not the be-all or end-all of searching. As time progresses and the world hates Christianity more and more, hates anything even smacking of conservatism, this kind of thing will occur as a matter of course, until the day when even posting a simple Bible verse will be suppressed.
I named this blog The End Time because we are IN the time of the end. This means the prophecies about Jesus’ return could be fulfilled at any moment, His appearing during this long era has always been imminent. So with that truth in the forefront of our minds, we as believers should be about His business sharing the Gospel and glorifying Him daily and with fervor. Right now it’s easy and free to share edifying content. It may not always be so.