In his book Working the Angles, Eugene Peterson identifies 3 basics of pastoral ministry which, in reality are 3 basics of any Christian’s ministry: 1) Prayer; 2) Reading Scripture; and 3) Living unhurried before another person.
For the past month, our church has been focusing on prayer. Our Faith Forward Prayer Team (headed by Sherry Johnson and Susan Scott) has just completed leading a Wednesday night study based on Bill Hybel’s book Too Busy Not to Pray. The sermons on Sunday mornings have focused on prayer, and we have challenged each other to learn the Lord’s Prayer – not only learning it “by heart” but also taking it to heart. Our prayer emphasis officially concluded Thursday, May 2 when – as part of the National Day of Prayer – our church hosted a “prayer” luncheon with Mr. Paul Prather as speaker. Although our “official” prayer focus has concluded, I trust that you will continue working on the “basic” of prayer.
The “basic” of “reading” Scripture (not just learning its message with our minds, but living out its meaning in our lives) will be emphasized during our Wednesday night Bible studies beginning May 8 (and continuing May 15, 22, and 29). Dr. Dalen Jackson, Academic Dean and Professor of Biblical Studies at the Baptist Seminary of Kentucky, will lead this study entitled: “The Bible in the Life of the Church: Interpretation and Formation.” Dalen is a gifted teacher whose Bible studies and presentations at Calvary are always well-received. Come and be part of this exciting study which will emphasize the importance of interpreting Holy Scripture.
In regard to the third “basic” (living unhurriedly before another person), let me encourage you during this busy “end of the school year” season to take and make time for what is rally important in life: God, family, friends, and helping other people. Someone once declared: “Our caring decreases as our hurry increases!” May we be God’s people who care for others! May we slow down enough to be caring and unhurried!
I look forward to seeing you this Sunday.