This is a little late, but what do you expect from a procrastinator? I turned 37 a few weeks ago, and like most every birthday I had some time to reflect on my life and my accomplishments (or lack thereof). This was also influenced by some really good sermons I have heard lately and our trip to China. Here are some of my conclusions.

  1. It is really easy to allow your ministry to get in the way of your mission. There are so many things that are urgent and that seem necessary that you allow that to become your focus. This can prevent you from doing the things that you were called to do in the first place. This is very frustrating.
  2. We have a tendency to only focus on the things that we want to do as Christians, but we are quick to neglect those things that are uncomfortable. Maybe because we think that someone else will do it, it is easy to avoid those unpleasant commandments. Specifically, I read Jesus’ parable about the sheep and the goats, and His criteria for selection centers on my treatment of people who are poor and hungry and in prison. He doesn’t give me a pass because I am a good guy. He expects me to take advantage of every opportunity to show His love to others.
  3. Life as a minister is hard sometimes, but no more than any other job. I have this expectation that it should be easy. When things get hard, I get frustrated and think that it shouldn’t be that way. After all, I’m a minister. I work for God. I should have it made. But like Jesus said over and over, if we are to follow Him, we should expect difficulty as well.
  4. We are cursed by our prosperity. Money comes easy, so rather than having to focus on survival we argue and fight about politics and other things. Our Christianity comes easy, so rather than our attention being on enduring persecution we are too concerned about the kind of songs we sing or the color of the carpet. The absence of difficulty creates the opportunity to obsess about trivial things.

That’s all for now. I’m sure that I will think of more later.