Quiet times are still an absolute vocational obligation. My vocation is rooted in my faith, and my faith is my relationship with God. But, I also need to constantly study and read and engage through writing or conversation. Otherwise, this, my craft will deteriorate into simple events planning or childcare/babysitting. This includes reading newspapers, theological books from seminary [even ones I’ve already read in class], other literature, magazines about youth and children’s ministry. And this means that my mind and heart and spirit need to be on the things that are honorable and good [Phil 4:8-9].
This comes in many forms, and may come from feelings of affirmation in what I’m reading and studying on a regular basis or emails from church members or from RC, or whatever HOS, but I need to take both the positive and negative. It’s strange to think how I’ve come a long way in receiving criticism a little better…but how strange and easy is it to receive the negative and reject the positive? I’m still searching out the core of who I am as a pastor, and that’s important to protect and maintain for myself, while at the same time, being open to the experiences and people who will be used by God to shape me on the outside, both the rejections and the confirmations.