Sunday, April 01, 2007

The View From the Pew

April 1st. I didn’t even realize what day it was until now. Makes me want to post something about the flood waters rising too high for me to swim any longer, and I’ll see you all in heaven. But you are all so smart you’d ask yourselves how I’m connected to the internet if it was really that bad. But I digress, to the real meat.

I had no responsibilities today. No preaching, no announcements, nothing. It’s almost too bad, because when you go somewhere for such a short time, I wish I was swamped and begging to be let off the hook, for just one day of rest, rather than for work of any type. But it did give me a chance to look honestly at myself and the role of being a pastor. Ever since I studied Ephesians 4 this past Monday, one particular part of that passage has stood out to me.

Ephesians 4:11-12 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up….

Read that carefully, the wording is very important. He gave each of these people not to perform the works of service, but to prepare the people for the service. While the pulpit and full-time work is important, it is not the be all and end all of the Body. It is merely the catalyst, the small spark that begins a chain reaction, ending in a powerful forward force.

That means the work is not from the pulpit, but from the pews. We as a collective body are the ones who make the difference, who literally are the hands and feet of Christ each and every day to a hurting world. That woman at work who has three kids and no one to help her; that man who lashes out at everyone in anger, these are the people we were born to help. They need the love of Christ as much as you and I do. Without us, they are doomed to a life of misery, and an eternity of hell.

Before church, I listened to a sermon from Brian Buhler. Some of you will know the same, and others should know the name, but it was refreshing to hear a sermon that was both well researched, well thought out, well presented, and dead on. At no time did my red flags go up wondering if what he said was correct, it all struck true. That is something I have sorely missed in my times here in Fiji, because these people lack excellent Biblical teaching. I was refreshed, and challenged.

That is the view from the pew: words spur action. Action spurs words. So on and so forth, with each person paying it forward to others, simply because of their love. You are the Body of Christ. You are the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and the teachers of the world. Without you, they will never know Christ. Without me, they will never know Christ. Be an example.

1 comment:

Lorelei said...

Yep!! That's for sure... isn't that the command we're given. RUN (I wish I could put that in HUGE letters) the race. Don't walk, sit, chat, have coffee, enjoy the view, go on hiatus... just RUN!! Out of breath, looking for the finish line, muscles aching... RUN!!(I've been thinking a lot about this b/c this was the charge Brian was given by one of our former pastors at his farewell).