Job Description

Key Text:  First Timothy 6:13-16

In the sight of God, who gives life to everything, and of Christ Jesus, who while testifying before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you to keep this command without spot or blame until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which God will bring about in his own time—God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever. Amen.

Talk about a job description!

It is the Apostle Paul’s call to young Timothy, a fellow believer and minister, to live up to his high calling in Christ.   Look at it again, “…keep this command without spot or blame until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ…”  Wow.

Recently, I reflected upon my own “job description” as a Pastor, with the Pastoral Relations Committee of my congregation.  It was good and fruitful discussion and I felt much supported in my “calling.”

I am thankful, though, that no one on the committee used such lofty words as Paul did.  I would be pretty intimated if they were to regularly intone a phrase that begins, “keep this command without spot or blame until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Again, Wow.

Yet I take such a calling quite seriously.

We all should.

It is the high calling of all believers and followers of Christ, clergy and laity alike.

We are all called to do our best to keep Christ’s commands without spot or blame and though we shall fail at this (being human) we can also surely count on God’s forgiveness and grace when we do.  Then, empowered once again, we can try again, until that day when Christ returns as promised.

Being a member of the kingdom of God, being a follower of Christ isn’t easy – it never has been – and never will be easy.

It is a privilege though, a gift, and a high calling.

It is much for than our “job description” as Christians.  It is our life.

By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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