Saturday, November 27, 2010

Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more

"Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more" begins Henry V as he rallies the English at Agincourt. It's Monday - I can relate to that.

There are days when being a pastor is a consuming joy. It's a job you enjoy because it's making a real difference and you're operating out of passion and conviction. That's why I love it.

I've had other jobs I liked a lot because of the challenges inherent in them and the rewards gained through your effort. And I was good at them. Because I worked hard, kept learning and growing in my craft, and operated out of personal integrity and trust. Do that, and you succeeded.

But this one, this job, places you at a completely opposite place.

You can do your best in every way - in prayer, preparation, execution and follow through - but the efforts aren't guaranteed. The outcome is out of your control.

I struggle with that.

Anyone who observes how I work quickly sees I'll do whatever is necessary to help New Hope be everything that it can be. There's not a job I haven't done except keeping the nursery during the years I've been here (I'm kind of busy during the services). Yard work - check. Maintenance - check. Cooking supper - check. Office work - check. That's over and above the "normal" pastoral duties.

Not a big deal as far as I'm concerned. There are certain standards we have to maintain or exceed and if I need to pitch in or step in to help, I'm going to do it. Loving the mission, loving the people, loving my job - it's just what I do.

It's not a sacrifice on my part at all- It's simply a response to love, in love.

But having done that, emotionally there are times when I'm expecting God to reward the effort - not just my effort, but the efforts of my New Hope family.

And I want them pretty quickly.

In a way I can see.

When He doesn't - and after all, my efforts - our efforts together - don't mean God HAS to do anything at all except His will - I sometimes struggle with that. I was reading an article by another pastor, who is in a very successful church, and was confronted with this.

From: 5 Prices A Leader Must Be Willing To Pay by Perry Noble
#2 -There Is An Emotional Cost – Leading in the church is one of the most emotionally draining things you will EVER do. You will discover that you can go from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows with one email or phone call. On most days you will feel overwhelmed and unworthy of your calling…and all of this requires that we be willing to pay the price emotionally.


And that's about all I'm going to say about that.

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