what does the word PASTOR mean to you?

i've been thinking a lot about this recently. Someone at oneighty heard me saying, "Please don't call me pastor, call me derek..." and now he calls pastor all the time. i think he's the only regular that has even joked like that... but it makes me think.

young in my faith, our church did not have any pastors, except a youth pastor, and a young adults pastor. For the first years of my Christian life i put these men up on pedestals, thinking and seeing that they were great men of God...

after some years passed, i grew to know my pastor's faults, but it was still easy to accept him as my spiritual leader. then leadership changed as that pastor left for the states. then the Vine commissioned two of their elders to be pastors.

then i became a pastor.

there are some days where i flinch whenever someone address me as pastor... ME? i'm thinking... i'm no pastor! it's pretty funny because there are some days where i have trouble believing i can actually hold the title of Christian, let alone anything half as spiritual as 'leader' or 'pastor'.

my call is simple. to inspire the English speaking young adults to fulfil their God-ordained destiny. To impact them to be closer to Jesus. To raise up future leaders who will in turn disciple the nations.

the walking out of that call... the execution is an entirely different thing, and simple it certainly is not.

i've had a long talk with one of my senior pastors about this, and being a pastor is about the call, the heart, the blessing of the congregation, and a commitment to follow biblical humility... the art of raising people around up (consider them better than i). i haven't gone to seminary, i haven't been dowsed with anointing oil from head to toe, i haven't travelled the world, wrote any books, performed any miracles, nor converted thousands... i'm not a big conference speaker.. i'm not even a little conference speaker... i'm not really dynamic, i'm a little on the predictable side... i'm not a looker, i'm just who i am.

and yet, here i am Lord.

there are times when i look out into oneighty, where i look out into a room full of young men and women who are earnestly seeking the Lord... and i just smile... because i know it's CERTAINLY not me that has brought these people here...

and yet, here they are.

anyways, some days i look at the mirror and i have to remind myself that i need to walk out the things that come out of my mouth. i look myself dead in the eye and i know the truth of my sins. i know the extent of my hypocrisy. i see the areas in my life that are shrouded in darkness... it's always at that point where i consider giving up, packing up shop, running away and hiding from God.. pulling the Moses in the dessert style of dealing with hard times. i may sound like i'm making light of this, but i'm entirely honest when my mind is screaming to my soul... "RUN AWAY NOW" somedays it's a feeling, somedays it's the only thing i can hear.

and then... almost like clockwork, every single week.. Jesus reminds me that it's about Him receiving Glory... it's not about me. He whispers my name. He fills my heart with His Love... and only recently have i felt that God, when He whispers to me with a voice that can only be heard by me... He calls me Pastor... and it rips my heart apart because i know that i have and never will earn it, but then it forces me to remember and receive His amazing, perfect, and never ending grace.

it is never about me. it's about Him.

Lord, i thank you so much for allowing me to be who i am... for blessing me, Janice and our role at one eighty. every week i'm amazed at your work in the people i lead, and it blesses me because i know that i have very little to do with that change. Keep me behind your Glory, keep me under your wing. Lord, i'm a weak and brittle man when i try to do this one my own, so help me boast in my weaknesses so that you can be Glorified.

and Glorified you will be. Through my life, through my family, through my ministry, through my weakness... through everything that i am and do, good and bad:

Be Glorified.

Thank you Lord.



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