Thursday, July 28, 2011
Saturday, February 05, 2011
- Adoration for God the Father, Jesus Christ, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. This adoration is so powerful that if you can imagine a medieval peasant being brought before a king to be honored...the trembling sense of unworthiness...the awe that a nobody like you can be in such great presence.
- Confession to God for all my shortcomings. Bring to mind every bad deed, thought, action or inaction that separates one from walking in His will. Complete and total confession that I am a sinner, saved by grace.
- Thankfulness for having the saving knowledge that I am a forgiven child of God. Thankful for each and every blessing...down to having clean water to drink and bathe in; having vision and hearing; food to eat; people who love me; every little thing that reveals God's grace being showered over my life.
- Supplication for those who are suffering. Telling God how my heart aches for those in my world who are fighting difficult battles with whatever their particular demons may be. It's important to note that the supplications ARE NOT for myself. If we have surrendered ourselves to God's will then praying for ourselves is denying that surrender.
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Monday, January 24, 2011
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
It’s peculiar how I was a lay speaker and how I routinely (at least annually) turned down opportunities to pastor a church. Mind you, in rural areas it is very common for a lay speaker to take a pastoral role because there are insufficient elders (official pastors) to take care of the small churches. While I routinely said “No” to the offer to pastor a church we got a new district superintendent. He wouldn’t take no for an answer. So, I took on a church…then another church. And now I look at the prospect of perhaps taking on another church. I’m done. Finished. Put to pasture.
I took on the pastoral task as a favor to the district in which I serve. Done it and have many T-shirts to show for it. But as of this summer at the annual conference, there will be a new pastor appointed to my church. I’m through “pretending” to be a minister when I’m merely a certified lay speaker. I’m announcing my resignation at our District Committed On Ministry meeting January 8th. It is with some regret yet some empowerment that I make my position known. Me, a regular parishioner, stepped up and answered the calling from the “boss” over the district to do him a favor. Two and a half years later, I feel I’ve answered that request and am calling it quits.
My calling is NOT into the pastoral ministry. My calling is to pray for people to be healed and receive Christ into their hearts. The weekly demand of coming up with a sermon and conducting services of worship IS NOT what I’m called to do. I’ve come to grips with this and am acting in accordance with this reality check.
So, “Brother Marty, pastor at Midway UMC” will no longer be my title. I will have no title and be empowered by that. I’ll just be that member of a congregation who has a gift and is willing to share that gift with anyone who comes forward to accept the power of Christ’s love into their lives. Nothing “official” from a pulpit…just me.
So, I thank those who may read this for their surrender of their lives to be set aside for the furtherment of the faith. I’m not set aside. I’m a bi…make that Tri-vocational Certified Speaker who stepped up when the call was made who has now determined that it is time to step down and become one who looks to the likes of You for empowerment and encouragement. I’m so terribly humbled to know the many pastors I’ve met in this short time I’ve been lifted up to be called a member of clergy. I’m not. Just a lay speaker who took a turn at being a pastor.
In the love of Christ….Marty (NOT brother Marty)