WHO SETS THE PASTORS AGENDA

How to determine where to invest your best energies in ministry.

After my first year of seminary, my denomination arranged for me to spend the summer as pastor of a rural congregation in Iowa. I was thrilled.

I moved into the parsonage with all my worldly goods on a Monday. On Tuesday I got up bright and early, showered and shaved, put on a dress shirt and a necktie, ate a good breakfast, and had my morning devotions. Then I sat down at the kitchen table, which would serve as my desk for the summer, prepared to start my first day of work.

Then the terrible truth hit me: I had no idea what to do that day. As a matter of fact, I had little idea of what I would do all summer! Oh, I knew that I would be preaching and leading worship every Sunday and visiting the sick and shut-in. But beyond that I had no plan, no agenda for my ministry in that congregation.

I walked around for some weeks hoping to encounter a burning bush on the edge of an Iowa cornfield. Oh, for a Divine Voice that would dictate The Plan. But the bushes of Iowa were not burning that summer. ...

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