If anyone should ever ask me what I miss most about pastoring a church I know exactly what my answer would be. Far far above everything else I miss the great joy and privilege of proclaiming the wonderful truths of God’s love and Jesus’ power. If it is in a sermon, Bible study, counseling session or private conversation, the opportunity to explain the marvels of His eternal truth and how it applies to us today. It is more glorious than I can describe in words to be entrusted with the life-changing truth about Jesus and be able to explain and reveal it to others on a regular basis. Paul himself expressed the same feeling (1 Corinthians 9:16).
Of course, I will still have opportunities to do this, but no longer several times a week to those God given me to shepherd. However in India I will be able to do this several times a day, seven days a week, for almost a full month! For a pastor/teacher that is heaven (although I don’t expect to get India mixed up with heaven). I look greatly look forward to the privilege. It takes a great emotional, spiritual and physical toll. Paul experienced this, too, when He said he was being “poured out like a drink offering” (Philippians 2:7; 2 Timothy 4:6). Still, these times of ministering all day every day in India are among my sweetest memories, for there is nothing like experiencing His power while delivering His message to hungry hearts. It’s something we only do on earth, for all will see and know Jesus in His completeness in heaven (1 Corinthians 13:12).
The more I am able to present God’s wonderful life-changing truths, the more in awe I am by these things, and the more humbled I become at His allowing me the privilege to be a vessel He uses for this purpose! (January 14, 2016, Doylestown, PA)
1 Corinthians 9:16 16 For when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, since I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!
Thank God for the times you get to present His truth to another. Ask for more opportunities to come and you to be aware of them. Pray for the wisdom to know what to say and the courage to say it.