I’ve been thinking about what I like about being a pastor, and I wanted to write some of it down. Now, there are things about being a pastor I don’t like. Not everything is easy, but for the most part I love what I do.
- Preaching. I really enjoy it. I see preaching as the time when a pastor has an opportunity to speak truth in the power of the Holy Spirit. Preaching is when I strive to leave the congregation with one or two compelling thoughts. If God uses my words to keep people thinking throughout the week, then I’ve done my job.
- Worship. I really enjoy leading the sacramental aspects of worship like Communion and liturgy (liturgy lite in our case).
- People. I like them. They make me laugh, and I really enjoy hearing their stories. Pastoring is about shepherding the flock. There are lots of people with the title of Pastor who don’t actually rub shoulders with their people. They might be great speakers, administrators, and CEOs, but without contact with their people, they aren’t acting as pastors. While my specific role can be limiting in this area, I always find that I’m more content in ministry when I’ve spent time with people.
- Funerals. I know this is an odd one to put on a list like this, but it is an honor to officiate funerals. There is no other time in a ministry when a pastor sits with a family and comes to know them when they are so open. The sadness can sometimes be overwhelming, but from a relational perspective, there is no better time to minister to those who hurt.
- Teaching. Yes, I see this one as different that preaching. The goals are slightly different as is the approach. Teaching is more about conveying Biblical information and leading a group to apply it to their lives. In preaching, I’m preparing, serving, and helping the congregation digest the meal. In teaching, I’m preparing the basics of the meal, but the group is helping fine tune it, serve it to one another, and learning application together. Teaching is more about helping people toward the goal of biblical knowledge and application. Preaching, to me, is more about inspiring people to praise God and live within biblical truth.
- Babies. Yes, I’m kind of a softy. I like praying over babies, and blessing those families.
- Growing kids. I enjoy seeing our children grow into Christian adults. There are disappointments along the way, but I’ve been a pastor long enough to see young adults I’ve known since they were 12 grow into mature followers of Christ. Sometimes in ministry its hard to see success in the immediate, but every so often you get to see the fruit of your labor years down the road.
- Equipping. I love it when I’m allowed to help Christians find their giftedness and use those gifts to serve God.
- I enjoy to see eyes light up when they see the Jesus clearly. Once he gets a hold on you, it’s hard to shake him loose.
- Weddings. Well, these can be a real privilege and a lot of fun. When I’m working with a couple who are serious about following Christ and honoring God in their marriage, it is a pleasure to officiate for them.