Preparing For Worship: The Minister's Life

Preparing For Worship: The Minister's Life

John Haralson   •   September 29, 2017

Jesus the Good Shepherd
, Ryszard Sleczka  

So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory. Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.'
I Peter 5:1-4

Dear Friends,

This Sunday will be a wonderful moment in the life of our congregation. We will be officially receiving Jason Davison as our new Pastor of Children, Youth, and Families. 

One of the gifts that God gives his people is the gift of spiritual leadership. God has been persistently kind and loving to this congregation, bringing us elders, deacons, and pastoral staff to help shepherd us. Jason is the newest manifestation of that kindness to us. 

As Peter points out, however, the gift of spiritual leadership requires mutual humility. Those in positions of authority are commanded by God to use their gifts and energies to serve and build up those God has entrusted to their care. And, for those under spiritual leaders, God instructs you all to receive the leadership of those placed over you. 

This call to mutual humility is a sword that cuts against our tendencies towards self-aggrandizement and self-protection. Those in positions of spiritual leadership are tempted to use their power and authority to gain prestige and control over others. And, those who are under spiritual authority are tempted to maintain their individual autonomy at all costs.

But, at the heart of the kingdom of God is a crucified Savior. Jesus is the Good Shepherd who, in his own words, laid down his life for the sheep. In the kingdom of God, leadership is always sacrificial and carried out for the benefit of others. 

This week: 2 Timothy 4, The Minister’s Life (Rev. Michael Kelly preaching)

Liturgy is here.

I hope to worship with you.