Church I Love,
Yesterday, riding home from church, God reminded me: I get to do this. By this, I mean be one of your pastors, specifically in the area of corporate worship. I needed the reminder because sometimes I only think, “I can do this.” The more I thought about it, the more convinced I was that both of those sentences reflect postures we would do better to think about.
I get to do this reflects humility, gratitude, and submissiveness. Four years ago I was shaken by the fact that you took a chance on a young seminary student with a few years’ experience leading music at a small church. I am not despising small beginnings, only pointing out that there were plenty of well-qualified people for the job, yet you chose me. I know all of us have experienced this feeling of gratitude in our lives: becoming parents, being promoted, getting our dream job, marrying the woman/man you love. Of course the downside to “I get to do this” can be feelings of inferiority, being overly submissive, and waiting on permission for every decision you make. Which leads me to the other sentence...
I can do this. The danger here is obvious: overconfidence, arrogance, and pride. My confession for you is that sometimes worship pastors think that we can pray enough, read enough Scripture, rehearse the best musicians, choose the perfect songs, and get everyone singing -- all without any help from the Holy Spirit. If you are cringing as you read that last sentence, that’s understandable. Please pray for me that I don’t ever think that way. The flipside is that this posture of thinking also reflects aptitude, proven experience, and skill. Each of us is paid a dollar amount because someone has placed a value on what we do. I am happy to spend more money on a better barber because he has excelled at his craft at cutting hair.
Where am I going with all of this?
All of us have to walk the line between these two things. God has gifted you to serve him in some area with some skill. You can do it. With time and disciplined effort, you will get better at it. In time, however, you and I are in danger of developing bad egos and losing the posture of humility that is required for all of those who serve our God. You get to do this. I spend each Thursday night and Sunday morning with a rotation of 16 men and women who can and get to play skillfully on their instruments and serve their congregation. We struggle each week to be excellent without having big heads about it. Add to that, we are placed on a stag
God has blessed our church with numerical growth over the last few years, and that has brought new people with gifts to be used. It also means those who are serving need to help make room for others to serve.
For those of you already serving, have you lost the wonder of I get to do this?
For those who are still looking for a place, what has God gifted you to start doing?
I get to do this,