One of the toughest tasks a church faces is choosing a good minister. A member of an official board undergoing this painful process finally lost patience. He'd just witnessed the Pastoral Relations Committee reject applicant after applicant for some minor fault -- real or imagined. It was time for a bit of soul-searching on the part of the committee. So he stood up and read this letter purporting to be from another applicant.
Understanding your pulpit is vacant, I should like to apply for the position. I have many qualifications. I've been a preacher with much success and also had some success as a writer. Some say I'm a good organizer. I've been a leader most places I've been. I'm over 50 years of age and have never preached in one place for more than three years. In some places, I have left town after my work caused riots and disturbances. I must admit I have been in jail three or four times, but not because of any real wrongdoing. My health is not too good, though I still accomplish a great deal. The churches I have preached in have been small, though located in several large cities. I've not gotten along well with religious leaders in the towns where I have preached. In fact, some have threatened me, and even attacked me physically. I am not too good at keeping records. I have been known to forget whom I have baptized. However, if you can use me, I promise to do my best for you. The board member turned to the committee and said, "Well, what do you think? Shall we call him?"
The good church folks were appalled! Consider a sickly, trouble-making, absent-minded ex-jailbird? Was the board member crazy? Who signed the application? Who had such colossal nerve?
The board member eyed them all keenly before he replied, "It's signed, 'The Apostle Paul.'"
Sometimes we are quick to judge. As we look at the letter we would probably all agree that “Paul” doesn’t sound like the man for the job. But as we take a look in the New Testament we see the GREAT work that Paul accomplished. When faced with great decisions let’s take them to the Lord in prayer and ask for His guidance, and that we wouldn’t be blinded but that we would see through Jesus’ eyes.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
- Proverbs 3:5-6 (New International Version)
Dear Lord we pray that we will keep our eyes on you and that decisions we make we not be made with our own understanding but with your understanding. In Jesus’ name, Amen.