December 18, 2009

What You Need to Know...

When I went to seminary, for so called "pastoral training," they taught me how to prepare a sermon. I learned how to dissect the Greek and Hebrew languages. I learned how to logically argue for and defend the Christian faith. I learned a lot about cults and world religions. But to be honest, I don't remember learning anything about how to console a family who is grieving over the death of a child. I was never taught what to say to someone lying on their deathbed. I never learned anything about hiring and firing church staff. Seminary didn't teach me anything about managing a church budget.

It's no secret that we have been walking through some pretty tough times as a church body at Southbrook Church. It's been a rough couple of months. I've been meeting for hours on end, discussing everything from church structure to budget cuts. I've seen and learned a lot about leadership and church business. Oh - and I did get to do a little bit of real ministry in the midst of all that! We baptized 4 people last Sunday! We saw 4 people accept Christ the week before! In the midst of the storm amazing things continue to happen.

Yesterday I received an email from a member of our church. Her mother is days from leaving this earth and going to be with Jesus. She asked if Pastor Rob could come and see her and visit with her. Now, Pastor Rob doesn't do a lot of hospital visits. It's not that he doesn't love people, it's that with a church this size he could never do it all. That's why we hire other pastors. That's why we train LifeGroup leaders. The Bible teaches that we are all ministers. It's not the pastor's job to visit everyone, it's the pastor's job to train believers to care for one another.

But this was different. And Pastor Rob felt like he needed to go. I had the privilege of going along. As soon as we walked in the room, her eyes lit up. And then I got to see a side of my pastor that many people never see. Pastor Rob pulled up a chair, opened his Bible, took her hand, and with a deep sense of love a caring he read Psalm 23 to her. He looked into her eyes and encouraged here. Then he prayed for peace.

Why am I writing this? I don't know. Maybe, in the midst of all the junk that is going on I want people to see what I saw. I want you to know that you have a lead pastor who cares deeply about the people in this church. I want you to know that he is a man called by God to lead this church who wants nothing more than to see people's lives transformed by the power of Jesus Christ.


Michelle Singleton said...

This is the man I know and love. He is a wonderful pastor, a remarkable husband and terrific father to our children. It is a privilege to serve at Soutbrook with you, Geoffrey, and your wife, Nancy! Christmas Blessings!

maranda said...

Geoffrey that is so great to hear. Because I dont think that Rob always portrays that side of himself. I also Know he has a deep love for the Lord and is genuine with his lead toward Christ. Thanks for sharing this and reminding us how blessed we are for this pastor.