(First Presbyterian Church, Tuckerton, NJ, a cool little church I got to preach at)
One of the best part-time jobs I had that got us through seminary was that there several small (I mean small, under 20 persons in attendance in sanctuaries that sat at least 400 people) Presbyterian churches in New Jersey who were always looking for pastors or “pastors in training” to fill a pulpit. A time for me as a young buck to come and polish up a sermon or two. It was a great way for me to practice what I was learning in my preaching classes and to find that “preaching voice.” I was always humbled in that these were churches that were once thriving in their communities. It was sad. How I wanted so much to help them find that pastor called by God to come and pastor a group of folks who also deserved to be pastored.
This morning I had the opportunity to fill a pulpit in a little community outside of Davis, CA called Dixon. Again, I was humbled and grateful for where the Lord has called me from and called me to at my church. I was thinking what if our pastors in our churches in our denomination had to occasionally fill a pulpit of a small tiny church in order to remember where they once started and to actually remember why they were called into the pastorate? What the Lord could do with an experience like that for a pastor who needed some humbling or a reality check would be amazing. Just a thought.