Pondering for Monday, January 16, 2023

Daily Office Readings for Monday of the 2nd Week of Epiphany: Year 1

Morning, Psalm 25; Evening, Psalms 9 and 15
Isaiah 44:6 to 8 and 21 to 23Ephesians 4:1 to 16; Mark 3:7-19:

“He handed out gifts above and below, filled heaven with his gifts, filled earth with his gifts. He handed out gifts of apostle, prophet, evangelist, and pastor-teacher to train Christ’s followers in skilled servant work, working within Christ’s body, the church, until we’re all moving rhythmically and easily with each other, efficient and graceful in response to God’s Son, fully mature adults, fully developed within and without, fully alive like Christ.” (The Message Bible: Ephesians 4: within verses 7 to 13)

I particularly referenced the “Message Bible” for this passage because it affirms my understanding that the Pastor-Teacher gift is one gift that has twin focal points – pastor and teacher.

To be a pastor is to be a listener and counselor. It is to be a spiritual guide to those who are seeking the Presence of the Holy Spirit.

To be a teacher is to be a leader and one who shows the how-to’s of life. It is also one who shows the when-to’s of life. It is the teaching of the proper way and time for acts and procedures.

To be pastor – teacher is to be one who listens and counsels individuals and instructs in the classroom, methods and circumstances of proper, moral, and godly, behavior based on tradition and experience.

I fully recognize that God has gifted some faith leaders as apostles (bishops), prophets and evangelists.  However, I profess to be a pastor-teacher. I am in my element when listening to others as they fix themselves.  And, only in formal classroom situations do I try to bring light to those seeking to learn something they want to better understand. Thank You Lord Jesus.

Have you pondered about what gifts God might have endowed you with?  It is discernment. You should discern how God has gifted you for the enhancement of the community in which you live. We need what God has given you.

Please keep up your thoughts and prayers and hopes for Ukraine, Iran and China.

As we listen to what the Spirit is saying to us, let us live to love and serve, and to teach others to love and serve, while pondering anew what the Almighty can do. John

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