Saturday, January 22, 2004

January 22, 2004

9:59 AM While cleaning up my computer files, I ran across an article Von Matthews sent the pastors in March 2001. Marshall Shelley wrote an article called “So What Exactly does a pastor do?” Lots of people ask that question—and it is difficult to answer precisely. Shelley includes this quote from Augustine (circa A.D. 400) in which he describes the pastor’s job:

“Disturbers are to be rebuked, the low-spirited to be encouraged, the infirm to be supported, objectors confuted, the treacherous guarded against, the unskilled taught, the lazy aroused, the contentious restrained, the haughty repressed, litigants pacified, the poor relieved, the oppressed liberated, the good approved, the evil borne with, and all are to be loved.”

Now that’s a real job description—although most of it deals with things we didn’t study in seminary. If anyone wonders why we have a church staff and not just one person, this list helps answer that question. 7:09 AM Marvin Olasky says there is a legal way we can teach the Ten Commandments in the public schools. 7:02 AM Here’s a note I received last night from a man named Rusty. This warmed my heart:

Pastor Ray, Thank you for the inspiration you gave me in reading your book, The God You Can Trust! As I write this I am suffering from stage 4 Liver Cancer. I found out 3 weeks ago and at the present it is inoperable. I start chemo next week in Pittsburgh Pa. I am 45 years old and at the best time in our lives. We have 5 children and 3 grandchildren, everything was perfect till this. Don’t get me wrong I am not feeling sorry for myself, just the opposite. I believe that it had to be the worst so that the miracle will be the greatest. I win no matter what! Without chemo they say I have 6 months. With chemo, two years. The love of family and friends is overwhelming, I am being prayed for all over the U.S. as we speak. Thanks Again… As I read your book I highlight on almost every page, I plan to give it to my dad next since he is a cancer survivor. God is in control, God is in charge of how everything turns out, God makes no mistakes, And God has our best interest at heart.. I know cause He told me so… Love Rusty!

He said it better than I ever could—”I win no matter what.” Only a man who believes in the sovereignty of God can talk like that. 7:01 AM Brrrr! It’s cold in Oak Park: 3 degrees, wind chill -7. That’s serious cold, folks.

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