If you’re not paying attention, you might miss the small things in ministry that happen to you as a pastor. They’ll fly by you quicker than a shooting star. These last few weeks have been a roller coaster of sorts in that I’ve been involved with people like J who’ve recently experienced the joy in finding out that her cancer was in remission. I’ve talked and prayed with people like Jimmy who continues to struggle with terminal cancer and somehow still smiles and still knows that God is still somehow faithful when your bones hurt so badly that you ask for the Lord to take you quickly.
Recently, I helped lead a memorial service for a longtime member and friend of the church who helped build the church brick by brick in 1941. A faithful member who gave his heart to community. I’ve seen and witnessed God’s faithfulness by those who don’t have much, who give of their time to the church with their own presence as a gift back to the Lord. I’ve also witnessed God’s provision for the church in every aspect, everything from financial gifts for building projects to gifts of food for the food pantry that we run twice a month that is currently low on food because the county is running short of supplies.
Over the last 48 hours I’ve experienced a kind of community that only happens when you are sitting still. A kind of community that only happens when you are actually paying attention to the God things of ministry. Yesterday I talked on the phone with someone who actually took the time to ask me how I was doing and what I needed prayer for. This afternoon got another phone call from a good guy who wanted to update me on a prayer request he shared recently in church. He again asked a similar question. He also wanted me to know that he really enjoyed what was happening in worship on Sunday mornings and that he was thinking of me today. What floored me was these two guys asked me something that moved me to a point of awe and gratefulness for the opportunity that I’ve been given by God to serve with the people of God in community. I must confess that it’s foreign to hear the words, “pastor, how can I pray for you?”
It was a simple reminder that as a pastor, it’s sometimes ok and even refreshing for others to hear that you might need prayer. It shows those you serve that your in the midst of the same kinds of things that most people face day to day. It shows that you’re human and that you’re not perfect, which to me is ok to admit sometimes as a pastor. As a pastor It’s encouraging to know that those you shepard sometimes recognize that we pastors aren’t super pastors which relieves some of the pressure in needing to be perfect and needing to be able to meet everyones needs, which is a myth to think that any pastor is capable of meeting every single persons need in the congregations they serve. Praise you Lord for the little accolades of life that come along in the form of your simple reminders of your faithfulness.