Coming in August or September – my newest book: “Fresh and Flourishing, a Contemplative Journey Through Psalm Ninety-Two.” I thought you might enjoy a sneak preview into one of my thoughts I recorded in the book:
“I can vividly remember what it felt like, years ago, to give up my church and no longer occupy the position of its pastor. I had so much loved being a pastor. When I had to move on, I felt empty. My entire being had been focused on helping others through the gifts God had placed in me in my role as a pastor. Suddenly, though the gifts were still there, the opportunities were not. I felt used up and unable to see what purpose there was for me, beyond being a pastor. Nevertheless, I understood that this new season of life would have fruitfulness in it I could never have had if I stayed in the season God wanted to close. Yet, there remained a hole in my heart for the calling I had so diligently fulfilled. Perhaps I will never fully get past the feelings I so greatly enjoyed as a pastor meeting His people’s needs. I had always seen myself as this important thread in a coat of many colors. Now, it was like I was pulled from the coat, floating like a loose thread falling to the floor. What was I to do?
It took me far too long, but years later, I began to see that coat of many colors from a very different perspective. No, I wasn’t one of those shiny colorful threads for everyone to see. I was really just a small thread in the lining of God’s coat of many colors. It was my high privilege to be so! My task was to be a functioning part of that lining that consists of innumerable servants of God. This had become my opportunity to fit and function without allowing my pride to tell God where I belonged in that coat. I began to see the value of what my experience and age could bring to younger pastors, using my gifts in ways I could never do in the past. Now, my ministry and life are very different, but certainly no less fruitful. I now clearly understand why, in all things, “it’s good to give thanks to the Lord.”
Look for the book later, but let what you just read speak to you today. – Dr. B