Repentance Lessons from Pastor Zack Cherian

It was hard for me to pick a few. From the time I knew Rev. Zack as my pastor, I have been constantly repenting; and it never stops does it!! Every sermon I hear, every conversation I have with him causes me to repent – to change my thinking. ( repent; metánoia – literally, “a change of mind”)

Just by helping me to think like God does has totally revolutionized by life! If I am living my dreams today, it is because of you, Pastor Zack.

Here’s what I learned from you:

  1. Love people without an agenda

True love does not have an agenda. I had to realize that Ps. Zack never had an agenda with me. If he did require anything from me, he would just ask directly. But he never had an agenda with me. There is no ulterior motive in why he loves me and not just me, but anybody. And that has really helped me to love people without expecting a ‘hidden-something’ from them.

P.S. Love Revolution Series is messing me up totally! (If you want to know about the true Agape Love of God, watch that

2. Value people – this is the only way to succeed in the kingdom

To value someone means to spend time with them and take out the time to also express your love to them. You can’t just love people in your thoughts. Stuff like ‘I was thinking of them’ does no good to anybody. If you love someone, express it.

I have observed pastor when he speaks to people one-on-one. He looks them in the eye, gives them undivided attention, doesn’t look around, listens attentively, and is quick to give a redemptive revelation. Those moments when he talks to them – so sacred I think twice before disturbing him. And he would give the same attention to a celebrity too. Titles and positions do not change anything. He treats each person as if he were the only one present in the entire room.

Value people. value people. value people.

3. Don’t be result-oriented with people

Relationships. You can’t expect results. You just cannot be focused on results with people. Truth is : “God is not in a hurry to change you, He is in a hurry to love you.”

For me as a pastor and even in general, as a person, this was hard to let go. We are always expecting something from people we love, whether we know it or not. It is so subliminal and we have got so used to it, we don’t even know it. And the only way we get over that is to get a revelation that God does not treat us as projects. He loves us and is not at all in a hurry to change us.

I cannot tell you how much this has helped me in truly loving people. It has freed me from the pressure of expectations and allowed me to love them freely without strings attached.

4. Don’t play the Holy Spirit 

The Holy Spirit is at work in the lives of people. He does not need my help. I have to trust Him and let go of control. I am not called to control people. I cannot make decisions for them or to try to enforce my decisions and my timing on them.

Even the Holy Spirit does not ever force people. He is the one who transforms people, not me! So let Him!

5. To love does not mean to control

Loving does not mean control. I have self-control as a fruit, not others-control.

I never knew I even had this problem until pastor patiently taught me and put up with my madness. And it helped in my marriage and all my relationships and in my ministry. Just freed me from the stress of not-constantly-evaluating people.

6. Never worry about money

Pastor Zack hates to see us every worry about lack. I had to be liberated from that mindset. I have learned to trust God in the area of finances not just by his teachings but also by just looking at how pastor and his wife Priscilla live free from the fear of not having money. At the same time, you inspire me to have radical faith in trusting God to provide!

Imagine how many stress-induced sicknesses I am free from because I am free from the fear of not having enough?!!!

7. I am not required to have all the answers all the time.

I am a pastor, not an answers-bank.

Initially I would dread the thought of not having all the answers, and somehow I thought, as a minister, I should have. No one ever has all the answers. We are in the process of knowing our God, and the revelation is oh so progressive. It is a journey. We will never know all.

This completely set me free and allowed me to just be obedient and give what I received. For example, if I was preparing a sermon, I would stress myself out thinking that I need to cover all the points, have all the answers, as if I was preparing a thesis! Thank God, I am free!

8. Always preach from the heart

At times, I would panic as to what to preach on festivals or special days. And whenever I reached out to pastor, he would just say, “Preach always from the heart.” What did God impress upon my heart? What did he reveal to me that blessed my heart? It always flows from the heart and only that which flows from the heart is truly effective in the kingdom.

9. God wants us to thrive by faith, not just survive

My poverty mindset took a big hit from when I met pastor Zack. He just won’t allow small thinking in his people. To think that if only God can ‘just’ meet my need. I’ve heard him say – God will give you so much that it will not only supply your need but someone else’s need too! I loved that thought. Now, prosperity has a purpose – it is always to be blessed of course, and then bless others from the overflow!

10. Honor ALL

Honor ALL and especially your pastor.

Yes, I thought I knew this and I was super-submissive and all that. But honoring someone does not just mean superficially doing outward gestures like standing up when they enter, or hang your head down when they speak!

I honor you by giving you time. I honor your calling, your anointing. I honor you for what God has called you to do. Though I learned a lot from Zack’s teaching on Honor, I’ve learned so much more from just knowing him and him personally pruning me! And might I add, I enjoy being disciplined by my spiritual father because I trust his love for me. And whenever he corrects me, I just grow and grow and leap in faith!

We have to honor one another in the kingdom. Sometimes I don’t agree with what elders think or say but I have learned from pastor that we can be politely firm, and still walk in honor. Upset with elders in the family? Honor.

11. How do I grow in favor?

Me: How do we grow in favor with God?

Zack: Receive




Me: Ok!

And I was expecting 10 ways to increase in favor with God!!!!

Receive? That simple?

You have uncomplicated the Gospel for me and so many around the world. Because of you, I am continuously blessed, and my whole marriage and family life has transformed.

Thank you pastor! I love you!


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