03 March 2012

Do Not Rush

Even as someone who's grown up in conservative Presbyterianism and memorized parts of the Westminster Standards as a child (and loves these documents to this day), I find the "Well, So-and-so isn't really Reformed--let's not dole out the precious R-word too quickly now" mildly nauseating. But there are some good and wise pieces of advice sprinkled throughout this interview with Derek Thomas and Carl Trueman, such as Carl's response to what a young man should do when he is wondering if he is called to preach:
Do not rush. When you are in your twenties, a year can seem a long time but it is not really so. Paul clearly assumes most people in church leadership positions will be older – family men, men established in their communities, men who have a track record of godliness and spiritual reliability. So go and receive the appropriate ministerial training but do not necessarily assume you should then go straight into a pastorate. I am taking on my first pastorate this year, aged 45 with 28 years of being a Christian, a decade of secular work experience, a decade of teaching at seminary, a marriage of nearly 22 years, two more or less adult children and service on two kirk sessions behind me. I hardly feel qualified now. I could not have done it aged twenty-five!
And this, about persevering in life and ministry (also from Carl):
For me, my marriage has been key. A faithful, down-to-earth wife who does not believe the propaganda I tend to spread about myself is a gift beyond price. If you have one, listen to what she says. You will not regret it.
HT: Lydia Brownback

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