Sunday, August 8, 2010

For God has called you, and your labor in the Lord is not in vain

I went to an ordination this afternoon.  I honestly cannot remember the last ordination I attended.  If it wasn't my own, it was probably a classmate's.  It was just wonderful.  We must have had more than a dozen pastors process and lay hands on the candidate.  It was a beautiful service and though I did not need a reminder, it showed me again why I love being part of the ELCA.

I've been looking at old pictures so I got out my pictures from my ordination, July 6, 1986 at Grace Lutheran Church in San Francisco.  

There was one sad point when I looked behind me to the people in the pews and saw a former colleague who has left the ELCA, sitting in the pews, unable to join us in the procession because he has chosen to cut himself off.  I thought it must be sad for him as well, even though it was his choice to leave.

The whole service was very moving - but here is the part that brought on the tears.  The charge to the ordinand - we pastors should hear this charge more often:

.........Care for God's people, bear their burdens and do not betray their confidence.  So discipline yourself in life and teaching that you preserve the truth, giving no occasion for false security or illusory hope.  Witness faithfully in word and deed to all people.  Give and receive comfort as  you serve within the church. And be of good courage, for God has called you, and your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks be to God for calling you and thanks to you for answering. Thanks be to God for the vision he has given you and the gifts to convey it. Thanks be to God for the courage he has given you. Though often challenged, your labor has not been in vain.