If a follow up to Monday's prayer post wasn't planned for yesterday, then this certainly came out of nowhere... well, not quite nowhere, so much as it came like so many other posts; just seconds after acknowledging I had no idea what God had in mind. It really is kind of exciting to see what He brings forward to my attention. I hope it's as powerful to read about, as much as it is for me to watch it occur with such frequency. I can't explain it. I'm also still wondering why it happens so often for this project and not the rest of my life.
So, on that note, with yesterday's questions of what is going on in the church culture and what attitudes, habits or experiences might contribute to how Jesus shared the reactions of the priest and Levite in the Good Samaritan parable, I quickly came to the absolute necessity for healthy pastorates.
With the recent arrivals of two young men having come on staff, I couldn't help but place them in our analysis of this parable. What they experience, whether in a church internship setting or a staff position at a para-church organization or coming on board with a local church body, either leading and overseeing a ministry or actually joining the team in a pastoral role... their early years are crucial. Their involvement as a player, behind the scenes if you will, of the daily operations and decisions within church leadership and how things happen and why from an organizational standpoint, will set the course for everything they do moving forward.
Thus, when they step into a church, whose leadership is not healthy, or the organization inefficient, or ministries lacking in effectiveness; relationships within the congregation are strained and the reputation with the community is negative... these are challenging enough. What's the new kid on the block supposed to do? How are they to respond? How is their course charted and how will they be expected to maximize their experience to set them on path to establishing and fulfilling a successful ministry, whereby God would accomplish the miraculous through their obedience and service? How will they remain committed when times of trials arrive?
As one would expect the days of an unhealthy church to be numbered in terms of feasible longevity, so too is the length of service to the kingdom of God to those working through the ranks, if you will, of church leadership that are attempting to build on broken or cracked foundations from their early years of ministry.
Clearly, they need our prayer!
Pray this #youthPastorWednesday, for those just starting their ministries... whether they recently joined the staff of a church or organization, as pastor or otherwise; for those in their early years service; pray God would place them and use them from the onset. For those in places of difficulty, instability and questionable health, spiritual, emotional and mentally, may God use them as He sees fit. May their be a transformation and restoration that takes place, in those ministries where God simply needs to show up and revamp for His glory. May those preparing for ministry and in the process of their studies... may their be a clarion call for what God has in store for them and where He would have them to go and to do in carrying out their destiny for the kingdom of God. May God guard the hearts and minds of those leading our youth and children... that this next generation would witness in their pastors (often not much older themselves) a love and passion for the things of God, a desire to serve Him wholeheartedly, no matter the trial or difficulty and to fulfilling God's calling for their lives, even when it looks and moves contrary to our personal ideals.
For we are never too old,
To grow and mature in God.
In the power of His Word.
In the plans He has that await
For us to follow Him.
For His glory.
Just a man, attempting to fulfill God's plan. Husband, Dad, Dreamer. Blogger.