Ministry should never be a solo endeavor. LIFE should never be a solo endeavor. We were molded, shaped and designed by our Creator God to be relational creatures.
It is not good for man to be alone. (Genesis 2:18)
Some try to do things on their own but I can’t imagine how they thrive – how they survive. As for me, I need connection – I need the flock. And especially as a pastor, I need my brothers and sisters in Christ.
I recently had coffee with a brother in Christ. He is a godly man and pastor who has been and currently is on the front-line of ministry. He has seen a lot of action and is a man of wisdom and integrity. In my former call I had such men in my life and I still call on them from time to time. This particular morning, I met with my brother and he instantly knew I had something on my mind. I know that my brother is dealing with his own ministry challenges, but he sat and listened to me. He offered encouragement and hope. He offered wisdom and suggestions. He offered his heart and experience. He prayed for me. It was something that I sorely needed. I went away from that coffee shop energized and ready to do battle again. Satan is hard at work to drive despair and hopelessness in people’s hearts and that is why we need each other. That is why I need my brothers and sisters in Christ.
And you, too, do not have to do life alone. You should never have to do life alone. I am not suggesting you run out and get married if you’re single. What I am suggesting is that you find a godly person to walk along side of you. Someone who will pray with/for you. Someone you can talk to. Someone who will listen and to whom you can listen. Someone who understands. Someone who intimately knows Jesus. Someone who loves you as a brother or sister in Christ. Someone who will preach the Gospel to you. Someone who will join you in the “battle”.
Life is too hard to do on your own so do not let pride tell you that you can. It is not good to be alone – for those are the ones that Satan, the prowling lion is seeking to pick off from the flock. Keep near the flock AND to the Shepherd – Jesus Christ. Be the relational creature that God designed you to be.
The following poem to dedicated to a mystery woman and her child. I don’t know who she is, but she showed up at our church door recently. Our Ring doorbell caught the encounter as she left a note. When I finally saw the footage, she was gone. The note was a series of prayer requests about her son and some stuff about her family. She left no name or contact information so I have no way to follow up with her. All I can do is pray and I invite you to do the same. I can’t tell you much but that’s alright – God knows her and I pray that she knows that as well.
And so, as I think about this woman and her son – praying for them – God placed this poem on my heart. I dedicate this to her and to the glory of God.
I don’t know where you are. I don’t know where you’ve been. And you may never, ever come this way again. Miles may separate us. Circumstances may keep us apart, But know that you are never, ever far from my heart. You seem to be in such pain. Lost with no where to turn. Oh how I wish you would someday return. God brought you to our door. He lead you by the hand. Oh how I want you to know His love firsthand. I know you may never read this. But this is what I am feeling. I will pray that God will grant you necessary healing. So wherever you are. And wherever you go. I pray that its the peace of Christ you will someday know.
2 Peter 1:16–17 (ESV) ~ 16 For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,”
To see this mountain is to see “majestic glory”. But that is almost sacrilegious to say, For this is only part of the story. For if this mountain is majestic, You are more so, For You are the Creator of the heavens and the earth, Thus it is glory to You I want to bestow. You are my Father – My Lord and King, You are my Savior and Shepherd. New Life You certainly bring. You are holy and awesome. You declared Jesus to be Your Son, He died and rose again, And he will never be outdone. From You is borne New Life Thus You are the Majestic Glory. I sing aloud and praise Your name, For You are my complete story.
The light shining in the darkness. The anchor in the chaos. The lifeline in the quicksand. You are my God and Rock. Peace in the midst of turmoil. Mercy in my suffering. Compassion when all seems lost. You are my God and Hope. When the wind and the waves rage. When the lion lurks in the shadows. When the enemy fires his arrows. You are my God and Shield. I know I am never alone. For You are my loving Father. Being Your precious child. I praise You through Christ my Lord.
“my little children, for whom I am again in anguish of childbirth until Christ is formed in you.” [Galatians 4:19]
Oh my flock, how I want you to know. How I want you to grow. And therefore it is the Word I seek to bestow. For you see, I am a shepherd, called to help you comprehend, called to feed and to tend. To show it is Christ who your broken life will mend. He is the One I want you to know, and thus He is the one in whom I want you to grow. Oh my flock, His heart is amazing to behold, and thus I may often get very bold, for it’s His Truth that I don’t want to go untold. And thus I echo the anguish of Paul’s heart, And thus I will never stop until I impart, God’s Word, that others from Him will never be apart.
To give thanks and praise to You, oh God, is the joy of my heart. And how can it not be? You gave me Jesus to redeem me from my sins. You defeated sin, Satan and the power of death through the cross. You gave me the hope of everlasting Life through the empty tomb. You showed incredible love, grace and mercy to an obstinate sinner. Holy God, You are so worthy of worship and praise. Time and capacity prohibits me from naming all the reasons. But, I look forward to the day when I will have eternity to name the reasons to praise You. How can one not praise You? How can one not raise their hands to You? How can anyone not fall on their knees in worship of You? It’s because they do not know You – help me to know You more that my praise of You will bring You more and more glory. Receive my praise – for it is the joy of my heart.
My eyes are closed yet the sun is shining through; My fleshly barrier cannot hold back the light. This reality proclaims the truth of the Light – and I smile. As I smile, I listen. I listen to the nature chorus. Birds of all kinds contribute. A dog barks wanting to join the chorus. Soon an insect offers their voice and the chorus grows. The music is unique – nothing like it will ever be heard. The music is rhythmic – no practice was required. The music is lively – singing praises to the Creator. Oh God, You have ordained praise and nature sings. You have given me Life, and my heart rejoices. The Light shines in the darkness and the darkness will never overcome. I listen I rejoice I smile