"Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done." Psalm 105:1
I just returned from two days of interviewing ministerial students and evaluating their progress in their ministerial studies. Some are just out of college and a few are just short of retirement. A few have just a few courses to complete while others a justing beginning the journey.
We listened to their stories. We heard their struggles. We were warmed by their passion and excited by their dreams.
They come from small towns and tiny churches. They come from large churches in cities. Some have overcome amazing headships and heartaches. Others have had a pretty smooth path. But all of these came before us with a sense of awe that God would choose to call them for ministry and a deep sense of gratitude for what God is doing in their lives.
They are eager. They are anxious. One part of them is thrilled about God's calling on their lives and another part of them is overwhelmed by all the responsibilities of Local Church Ministry. That is precisely how it should be.
Each of them had different dreams, different talents, different agendas, various spiritual gifts and they alternated between acting very self-confident and entirely inadequate. But one thing was evident, they were unspeakably grateful for the work God had done in their heart and they were praying for the day that they could take leadership in a church and "make know among the nations what He has done".
We ministry veterans find it encouraging and envigorating to see this next generation of pastors who will stand beside us in the work of the Gospel and then someday come behind us to . We count it a great privilege to come long side them and share in their development. Someone did it for us and we are thankful for the chance to shape the next generation of ministers.
I left those meetings after hours of interviews and climbed into my car extremely grateful to God for these who have answered the call to "...make know among the nations what He has done!" I thanked God for calling them and I thanked God for their obedience. I praised God for their eagerness to do anything, go anywhere and give up anything in order to follow their calling. And I thanked Him for calling me and giving me the great privilege working with the called.
"Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done!"