I am reading ordination papers and reading about peoples lives and callings. Things that make them tick and hurt. Things that have shaped them and made them who they are today. I confess how deeply humbling it is to read the stories of peoples lives. It's moving even, to trace the hand of God in peoples lives and see how they have been led by God.
More and more my heart beats for the young pastor out there who is alone and struggling to find their way. So often when I was new to the gig, I longed for a mentor who could listen to my stuff and tell me it would be alright and I could try these few things to make it ok. Now I've been doing this for twenty some years, and I'm watching the new crop take over and I want for them to do well and be faithful and find their way with God. That's one reason I was willing to do this Ministerial thing, so that I could do what I could to help them along the way.
So tonight I'm praying for a pastor friend who's not doing well at all. He's been off work for a while because of illness and news has come that he's not doing well at all. His family is loosing it too, which is to be expected. Life is really really tough, whether you are a pastor or not. But you add some of that pastoral stuff to the equation and life can spiral out of control quite quickly.
So you need to build into your life good quality characteristics. Character. The thing that you are when no one is looking. Because in this day and age, it's a basic requirement to this kind of work.