On Sundays I have the privilege of leading beside my husband. My husband I are co-pastors of our church. Although I recognize that is not the same in all churches, this is a dynamic that works for us. It is something that our church thrives under. There are areas in both of our personalities that need both of us working together to reach our church. We do not make excuses or try to undermine the weakness of what the other has. We build each other up, in the home, and in front of our church.
This past Sunday as I was spending time in worship before service, (I believe that we should be prepared before we get to church, and not just the pastors but us who are there to receive the proclaimed Word that our pastors teach), but as I was worshiping a passage of scripture stood out to me:
Ephesians 3:14-19 (AMP) For this reason (grasping the greatness of this plan which Jews and Gentiles are joined together in Christ) I bow my knees (in reverence) before the Father (of our Lord Jesus Christ), from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name (God – the first and ultimate Father). May He grant you out of the riches of His glory, to be strengthened and spiritually energized with power through His Spirit in your inner self, (indwelling your innermost being and personality), so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through your faith. And may you, having been (deeply) rooted and (securely) grounded in love, be fully capable of comprehending with all the saints (God’s people) the width and length and height and depth of His love (fully experiencing that amazing, endless love); and (that you may come) to know (practically, through personal experience), that you may be filled up (through your being) to all the fullness of God (so that you may have the richest experience of God’s presence in your lives, completely filled and flooded with God Himself).
My heart cried out for the people in our church. Oh that they know that their lives can be so much bigger than how they are living right now! Are we showing them the fullness of God in our own lives? Please do not allow myself to get comfortable, to not become desensitized to the Holy Spirits leading.
Are we showing them the fullness of God in our own lives?
There are different levels or stages of faith. I had listened to a series by Michael Todd when he was on this series called Crazy Faith. I was intrigued because he was in the middle of a building program, just like we are. He had different segments of his series like “Maybe Faith,” “Hasty Faith,” “Baby Faith,” etc. It is a really good series.
My husband has been on this series called “Arise” for the past few months and he talked about the sleeping church. What is funny is that the verse he used was the same one used to open up “Lazy Faith.”
Matthew 26:40-41 (NKJV) Then He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, “What! Could you not watch with Me one hour? Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
I do not know if you have ever stood up and spoke in front of people or not. There are times that I get up to do the announcements, lead our church in a declaration, and most people are looking down at their phones. This can be very discouraging. God has to remind me that I am not to focus on that. I need to focus on what He wants me to say. There have been times that I have ministered and people are sleeping. Now our service is at one thirty in the afternoon. This can be discouraging. God has to remind me that He does the work, I am just the vessel.
With Pastor Appreciation Month comes articles about the statistics of Pastors or Ministers. There are articles about their struggles. There are so many that quit or feel like they are not making an impact.
I am so very grateful that we pastor a church that loves us for who we are. We decided at the beginning of our leading that we were going to be as transparent as possible. We were not going to try to show perfection that was not there. Excellence and perfection are two different things. As a church we should be doing things in excellence, but to not allow room for grace would not be who Jesus modeled Himself to be.
My heart and prayer for our church is just like Paul prayed for the church in Ephesus. The Passion Translation says (Ephesians 3:16): And I pray that he will unveil within you the unlimited riches of his glory and favor until supernatural strength floods your innermost being with his divine might and explosive power. Please do not fence yourself in by trying to do things on your own, or looking at your natural capabilities. He can do so much more with your life if you will just surrender. This is a pastor’s prayer, that we as vessels, help open your eyes to see your potential. We see it in you. A pastor’s heart is just like that of the Father. We see so much potential!