Friday, July 3, 2009
Ministers to those we influence
As we move into the 4th of July weekend and we think about serving through our church and in and around our community, these thoughts by Missionary William Carey really speak.
Our church family is as community outreach focused as you and I take steps to be.
What are your responses to Carey's quote? Is he asking too much?
“A Christian minister is a person who in a peculiar sense is ‘not his own’ (1 Cor. 6:19); he is the ’servant’ of God, and therefore ought to be wholly devoted to him. By entering on that sacred office he solemnly undertakes to be always engaged, as much as possible, in the Lord’s work, and not to choose his own pleasure, or employment, or pursue the ministry as something that is to subserve his own ends, or interests, or as a kind of bye-work.
He engages to go where God pleases, and to do, or endure what he sees fit to command, or call him to, in the exercise of his function. He virtually bids farewell to his friends, pleasures, and comforts, and stands in readiness to endure the greatest sufferings in the work of his Lord, and Master.
It is inconsistent for ministers to please themselves with thoughts of a numerous auditory, cordial friends, a civilized country, legal protection, affluence, splendor, or even a competency. The slights, and hatred of men, and even pretended friends, gloomy prisons, and tortures, the society of barbarians of uncouth speech, miserable accommodations in wretched wildernesses, hunger, and thirst, nakedness, weariness, and painfulness, hard word, and but little worldly encouragement, should be the objects of their expectation.”
— William Carey, An Enquiry into the Obligation of Christians to Use the Means for the Conversion of the Heathens