What’s in a coffee mug? More than just coffee
October 21, 2003
Coffee mugs seem to multiply in our kitchen cabinet. Behind one cabinet door is our "collection". We’ve received them all as gifts or promotion items. One is from a church we visited years ago. Members of the church came to our house on visitation to invite us to return and join their church. They said, "You’ve now been MUGGED by Cross Timbers Baptist Church." Some of these mugs in our cabinet are certain to become collector’s items — at a garage sale!
But, the favorite mug of my "collection" is one that was given to me by a Saint of my last pastorate who is now unknown to me. The mug has written on it the most endearing message and honor that I have ever received. The message on the mug is thoughtful and I am still grateful, but to be honest it wasn’t appreciated as much then as it is now. The message is just one word "Pastor."
I believe I can speak for every pastor with this sentiment, "There is no greater honor or blessing a person can give me than when, from their heart, they call me ‘Pastor’". That is the moment when I knew that our hearts had been knit together. What joy that one simple word brings to my heart — Pastor.
It seems today that the office of pastor is scorned by some. How sad. Some may see a pastor as another source of authority to rebel against, question or conquer. They are committing grievous spiritual mistakes. God puts pastors into roles of spiritual authority in a church (1 Pet. 5:1-7). He does so for your benefit. I believe the Bible when is says:
Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you (Heb. 13:17).
Pastors are a gift of God to you and your church (Eph. 4:11-13), so receive them and treat them as a gift from God. Why? Scripture says it will be profitable for you!
God’s call is a spiritual treasure that a pastor cannot reject because it is a call that God does not change. For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance (Rom. 11:29).
Pastors should live their Christian public and private life in such a way as to give you a living example of genuine Christianity. Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. (Heb. 13:7).
October has been set apart as Pastor Appreciation Month. Some churches and people are exceptional at finding ways to encourage their pastors. Let me encourage YOU to be the source of much blessing to your pastor. Remember, he is given to you to " watch for your souls ."
The life of a pastor is not an easy life. In addition to preparing and delivering at least three college level term papers (sermons) each week, there is counseling, leadership, prayer, bereavement, visitations and soul-winning. Believe me, every pastor has ‘war stories’ he could share.
The church is filled with the finest people in the world — and some of its biggest "stinkers," too.
But, being a pastor is a blessed life! Especially when someone pays you the greatest honor anyone could ever give on this earth. It is when from all of their heart they call you: PASTOR. Now you know why I have a favorite coffee mug.