A Pastor’s Duty
As pastors we are under-shepherds under our arch shepherd Jesus Christ, as Peter teaches. I often think that I would have to collapse under the responsibility of the office in the church, were it not in Jesus that I find an example, a teacher, a helper, a comforter, a ruler and a shepherd for my own soul. He fulfills his threefold office as prophet, priest and king in a perfect way, as we saw as I taught on John 12:44-50 at the beginning of the month. And as for each and every Christian in the church, this is my only comfort in life and death. I trust in him to teach me what to do, to forgive me where I fall short and to guide and protect me, so that I can follow him in the place where he has put me. Please pray that I will be able to teach rightly the word of God, to lead people passionately to the grace of God and to order and protect the congregation by wise counsel and a life of integrity and holiness, as we see also in Samuel, looking back at his ministry in 1 Samuel 12.
In the preparation for the sermon on John 13:1-17 I was personally overwhelmed by the love of Christ, who showed his love on his last evening before his death, by washing the feed of his disciples. To serve one another in practical and spiritual affairs is always a love issue. So this month we have been encouraged very much by the love of many young church members who zealously worked and served for the benefit of the congregation. Four young converts will be baptized, Lord willing, at the end of May. This is another opportunity to serve as we lovingly nurture, teach and train these new-born in the faith family.
As elders we are working hard to find the best way to serve the church plant in Frankfurt. Our love to the brothers and sisters there makes the coming separation hard and sad as they are constituted as a formal church, yet our love for them also encourages us to make everything possible for a firm, healthy and fruitful start as an autonomous church in Frankfurt for the glory of our great God. Would you please pray that we might be able to serve wisely for the establishment of a sound witness in Frankfurt?
In all these topics and tasks I want to learn from Samuel, who even after laying down his public office did not neglect prayer for the people, for this was the main instrument by which God used this man of God as a blessing for generations (1 Samuel 12). Would you join us to pray for the church in Wetzlar and the kingdom work in Germany, that we might stand and serve for the glory of God and the welfare of men?