Pastor Chad's Itinarary

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

"So You Want To Be A Pastor?" (pt.6)

1 Corinthians 12:15) " I will most gladly spend and be expended for your souls. If I love you more, am I to be loved less?"
Last week marked a great blessing and a spiritual renewal through our meetings at Pleasant Hill Baptist with David Miller. The four nights of meetings with Bro.David proved very profitable to the people at PHBC. Our people were of course amazed of how David has disciplined himself to the Word of God to where he can quote and preach from memory. This is of course a gift from God to build up the church of God. I believe as well our people were encouraged by David just being a "country preacher." Nothing that is, "flashy" or "glamorous", just a man God has called to preach his gospel.
We had above normal attendance throughout the week, which I was thankful for. But that meant extra work for the pastor. What do you mean extra work? Often as a pastor you have to do alot more than just study, pray, and visit shut-ins (especially in a smaller congregation). There will often be things you see as a pastor that will need to be done which no one else will see.
I write this not because I am upset to have to do these things but rather to let men who might be pursuing the ministry to know (the ministry) is more than just praying, studying, and visiting. Throughput the week it rained periodically and people were coming in the building with muddy, wet, and grassy shoes. Our custodian only cleans once a week, usually on Friday. So, that meant if the grass and mud where to be cleaned either I would have to call one of our deacons or someone else to do it...or do it myself. So on throughout the week, I spent a couple of hours cleaning some mud up and vacuuming the building. Also the bathrooms needed to be cleaned. Not a big deal right? The bathroom was out of toilet paper, needed paper towels, and swept and mopped as well. After each nite of the meetings I was up early downloading sermons on the computer so we could mail out cd's for our shut-in ministry and others who visited. Which we ended up mailing out over 100 copies of the cd's to people throughout the community and others.
You might say why are you telling us this? Are you trying to get glory? My answer is, NO! My desire is to those of you who think being a pastor is studying for 30 hours a week in your office, praying, and making a few visits each week...please do not fool yourself. If you truly take shepherding the flock of God seriously there will be times where you will have to vacuum, clean a toilet, and even make cd's. I believe if a man is not willing to clean the toliet for the glory of God how can he preach for the glory of God? Is cleaning the toliet any less than preaching the gospel if it is done for God's glory?
If you are a pastor who has never had to do such tasks in the church, I urge you to take it on one week. It will humble you and cause you to appreciate those who do it week in and week out. At the end of the day men being a pastor is not all about standing in the pulpit in your polished suit and telling people all you have learned. Sometimes it is doing the small menial tasks and doing it for God's glory!

What do you think do you agree or disagree?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

"Spring Outreach With David Miller" (pt.1)

Zechariah 4:10) "For who has despised the day of small things?"
As many of you know we are in the middle of our "Spring Outreach" with David Miller. David is from Heber Springs, AR where his ministry (Line Upon Line) is based out of his local church, Tumbling Shoals Baptist church. I met David over 6 years ago at a deacons retreat in Alabama. Since then we have kept in touch. About 5 years ago David invited my wife and I to his annual expository preaching conference which his ministry and his local church (Tumbling Shoals Baptist church) hosts every year.
During our time there I found it refreshing to see that David did not come from a "mega-church." But rather, a small country church. Something David said during the conference to the preachers attending was, "the fact is the large majority of you men will never pastor the First Baptist church of your county seat." This was a great relief to me and my ministry, due to the thought I had to grow a church to be a "big" church. David wanted us preachers to see you could do things for God's glory, which he said, "regardless of where you serve, whether you have 10, 50, 100 people, you can serve God in such a way which brings Him great glory!"
I have since then had the privilege to teach in Ecuador with another ministry which is based out of David's home church, International Church Planters, in their pastors bible institute. Over 50% of the church membership of Tumbling Shoals Baptist (which is largely older members over 50 years old) have been on the foreign mission field with ICP (to Eucador and Africa). I am so encouraged that God, if he so chooses can work even in "small country churches." This brings hope to pastors and lay members who might serve in the rural churches and will never have the big churches. Which I truly believe the Lord has no "big or small" churches!
I have written this blog so it may encourage others (pastors and lay members) who may seem they are out in the middle of nowhere and God has forgotten them. God has not forgotten you and matter of fact, has you are right where He wants you. So, do not be weary in well doing...serve God with all you heart, mind, soul, and strength and do it for His glory. I know as a pastor we may seem as though we are spinning our wheels in the mud...but we do what we do for God and not man.
So when you feel as though no one cares and you wonder if God remembers where you are, "the most beautiful rose God has ever created has never been seen, for it is in the middle of a forest somewhere bringing God glory right where He placed it." So, it is with preachers, God often places them right in the middle of nowhere, in the small country churches where they will never make it on the radio, television, or have a jet plane, but He has you and me right where he wants us.
"For who has despised the day of small things?"

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

"So You Want To Be A Pastor?" (pt.5)

2 Timothy 2:24-26) The Lord's bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will.

For the last month now we have been considering the passage from the book of 2 Timothy on being a pastor. Since Timothy was an elder at Ephesus, Paul saw it was necessary to write to him on how to handle opposition in the ministry. This passage of scripture is worth ones time as a pastor of a congregation or just being a saint of God. Know this brethren, Satan is going to and fro to seeking whom he may destroy and often he uses individuals to attack us. Paul reminds Timothy not to be quarrelsome, be kind to all, he must be able to teach, have patient when wrong, and correct with gentleness.
One thing I wish I was told when God called me to preach His gospel, was that everybody will not "love me." Paul makes no mistake about it, to let Timothy know he will face opposition in the work of the ministry. Doing the Lord's work is not a light task. It takes walking in the spirit and a little tough skin to take opposition and critics of our ministry.
Paul reminds Timothy, for those in opposition to him, that God may perhaps grant them repentance leading them to the truth. As pastors, we must pray God would allow those who oppose us to see the truth of His Word and where we stand as pastors. I believe we ought to pray for God to "grant"them repentance.
Repentance is not something which is "worked up" but rather is given by God. A lost man can not repent of his sins unless God grants him repentance. Repentance is a change. It is a change of mind, heart, and soul. When faced with opposition it is only God who can give them repentance in order for them to see the truth. As pastors we should not be so concerned whether or not "we" are right but rather are we biblical. This is where we stand in our fight for truth is on the authority of God's Word. This is where true repentance will be given.
So when opposition comes my way or your way, pray for God's will to be done not ours. We need to desire to stand on the truth of God's Word and not our opinions. So when men are in opposition they are in opposition with God not us. Therefore, we can again point them to, "what saith the scriptures," instead of "what saith whoever." Perhaps then God may grant them repentance!