This was a trip that I tagged on right after returning from a trip to San Francisco the night before. Preaching is an honor that comes with a divine calling to ministry. No, the money is not the reason for this busy life, of that I can assure you.
But, when there is a divine call, it is Heaven’s agenda that must be acknowledged. It isn’t scary. In fact is a thing of wonderous beauty.
Thank about it. How can you get over 1,000 Pennsylvanians to agree on one thing together? Most would never take on that kind of challenge. It has to be something close to a miracle.
But, to be fair, when over 1,000 Pennsylvanians have a common need, there is a potential for a supernatural event. This group needed a new pastor. One pastor was free to answer the call.
A pastoral search is not a simple task. Usually a search committee compiles opinions and shape a profile together. Then, they set out on a journey to gather potential names that match that profile.
When there are some hits, a conversation begins. Some of these interchanges end early. Others linger longer.
Eventually, there is one that all believe is promising. Dialogues ensue. There is growing depth with each new step that is taken together.
I talked with several on this search committee. They told me that they entered their interviews with a battery of questions. But, before they could ask them, Mike, answered them all in his informal conversation with them.
After that discovery, Mike continued talking. He was ministering to the lives of these on the committee. It was a touching moment. Tears testified to this connection.
One by one, family by family and committee by committee could sense a union was forming. It wasn’t a matter of voting but recognizing a shepherd whose voice was easy to recognize by those in the church family. Mike and his family sensed the same blending of hearts and souls together.
I was graciously introduced to deliver the Sunday message of the installation service. Everyone was expectant. Speaking to a gathering like that is a treat.
The smiles abounded. Hope overflowed. Love marked this assembly of Christ-followers. It is a match made in heaven.
photo credit: brucefong cellphone photography