Every pastor, sooner or later, faces the contradictory demands of being a professional and being in ministry.
A professional has a schedule to keep, credentials to maintain, a career ladder to ascend. Urgent details crowd out solitude, service, and the deepening of a relationship with God. A life of simplicity and ministry to souls is elbowed aside by ambition and expectation.
Like doctors, lawyers, and other professionals today, pastors often feel their working conditions conflict with their calling. Heightened frustration leads to decreasing strength, peace, and joy.
But it does not have to be so.
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How can we find the joy and strength in service that obviously characterized Jesus himself, as well as many of his followers through the ages?
The One we work for has placed in our hands the keys to the kingdom (Matt. 16:19). Setting aside the centuries of ecclesiastical controversy over the meaning of this passage, we need to understand simply that our confidence in Jesus ...1