Each week, I want to share something I appreciate about my community of faith, the Belton Church of Christ located in Belton, TX. Each week, I will highlight one “bright spot” in my congregation.
I returned to preach today after being out of the pulpit for two weeks. Although I attended my congregation for the two Sundays I did not preach, I was able to use the time to focus on post-graduate work through Abilene Christian University. I love my church because the leaders encourage me to grow through education.
Preaching can be a draining activity. I enjoy the study of the Bible but what gets me most excited is to think about how God’s Word can change our congregation. It can take incredible amounts of energy reserves to preach week after week. I am still a relative beginner at preaching since I’ve only been doing this for less than 4 years. My church leaders recognize that I need to have times when I can refresh, retool and refocus for preaching and leading. Education helps give me this space.
Many congregations and church leaderships do not value education. In fact, there are those who are suspicious of education. They believe that education will ruin a preacher. I agree that it is possible to become so enamored with theory that you forget reality, but I have found that time away reflecting about ministry has made me a more effective minister. I need all the help I can get.
Here are the education opportunities that I have taken advantage of this past year. There are many other options for ministers, but these are simply the ones I have been able to be a part of.
I love my church because they see the importance of keeping me sharp, fresh and ready. Not every church shares the value of education, but I love that my church does.