LESSON 02: The Pastor - A Servant of All
Mark 9:35 And he sat down, and called the twelve, and says to them, If any man desire to be first, [the same] shall be last of all, and servant of all. (AMIV)
When Craig and I started our first local church, we were met with some resistance. We were coming with a fresh vision and really looking forward to imparting these truths to those that the Lord had sent us. Yet after just our first meeting we found ourselves faced with many templates and old mindsets regarding what a pastor should be and how a church should be run.
At first it was a bit difficult to press on with our new vision, but the Lord kept encouraging us, saying that if we would just be model, that those in our care would rise up and become the same model as we were.
The most difficult part was always to change the preconceived ideas of what a pastor was supposed to be. It was clear that our work was cut out for us! The Lord continues to encourage us with this scripture:
2 Timothy 2:24 And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle with all [men], apt to teach, patient, 25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God somehow would give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; (AMIV)
You see to be a pastor and to stand up behind the pulpit is not about always getting it right or about being the "head honcho" that everyone has to obey our of fear. Rather he is to be a model and a servant so that those in His care might learn to be a servant also. It is so easy when you are a leader to put the cares and the running of your ministry into the hands of others.
It is easy to be too busy to get your hands dirty with the menial things. But think on this for a moment: What kind of leaders are you raising in your church or ministry? Are you raising up a group that will stand and lord their leadership over others and demand that others run after them in fear and in obligation? Or are you going to raise up servants like Jesus was? Servants, who like Jesus would stoop down and wash the feet of His disciples.
I can promise that the walk we chose was not always easy. And preparing for each meeting took my time and often I would wonder if we were doing it right. But over and over, God would simply say to us, "Love and be a servant, and they will in turn learn to be servants also."
Of course there is a lot more to being a pastor to this and as you continue with us in these lessons, we will look more at God's pattern for the End Times Church and the function of the pastor. But if there is one thing that I can leave you with today it is this: A pastor is called to be a servant of all, so that He might raise up other servants who would serve and bless the Body of Christ!
Never forget as you stand up behind your pulpit or in personal ministry that those in your care look up to you and measure themselves up to you. What kind of image are you giving them? Are you giving them the image of Christ? Are you doing what you would like to see them doing? Let your yes be yes and let your no be no and above all, love like Jesus, act like Jesus and serve like Jesus!