Friday, September 3, 2021by Reverend Dan on September 3, 2021
“Keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.”
2 Tim. 4:5
Found it. The Biblical job description of a pastor.
Church committees spend a lot of time and energy and paper writing out a job description when it has been right there in scripture all along.
Number 1. “Keep your head in all situations.” Good advice. How many times have frustration or impulsiveness, or conflict or criticism derailed a pastor’s work? Too many, I’m sure. It feels personal and we get defensive, angry, depressed and a whole bunch of other emotions just like every other human being would. That’s when we need to lean on scripture and remember to simply, “be strong, take heart, and wait on the Lord.”
Number 2. “Endure hardship.” Not all beatings are measured in lashes, and not all shipwrecks are at sea. At some point in our lives, we all feel pulled under from the weight of life. Many times, the temptation for a pastor is bail, to find “greener pasture.” Or worse yet, to leave ministry altogether. Statistics prove that with over 1,500 pastors walking away every year. You see, while we were taught about preaching and counseling, we were never taught that suffering is also a part of ministry. But it’s that suffering – that weakness – that makes us strong, for it is then that we give it all over to God and trust Him. (If you want to hear more on this, come to Union Ridge this Sunday – the sermon is about this very topic and entitled, “Keep on Walking.”)
Number 3. “Do the work of an evangelist.” Us preacher types love to tell folks about God, to share the gospel of Jesus Christ (some just take longer than others – GUILTY!) Sunday after Sunday, (and Wednesday after Wednesday for some), we stand in that pulpit and preach our hearts out. Even as our habitual “nodders” catch a quick nap, as folks write out their shopping lists on the back of the bulletin, as folks balance their checkbooks (you think we can’t see all that going on?), we try to speak the truth of God for those whose ears and hearts are open. It’s an honor and privilege to share the greatest story ever told and the day we forget that is the day we need to step back and re-evaluate our calling.
Number 4. “Discharge all the duties of your ministry.” This is the catchall clause. Ask 300 church members what this means, and I promise you’ll get 300 different expectations. What folks forget, however, is that while we serve them, we work for God. It’s His voice we listen for, because if we’re tuned in and hearing Him, we’ll be inherently supplying the needs of all of His children.
Serving as a pastor is awesome. And hard. I wouldn’t trade what I do for the world. I’m blessed to know I’m right where God wants me to be. And how many folks can say that?!
Father God, thank you for the calling to serve you by serving others. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.