Some of the best stuff about being a pastor/leader is found in the surprises.
You find out what you are made of when dealing with the surprises of life. Crisis is often the crucible in which leadership skills are revealed and refined. Plan as we may… we are never immune from the come ups and curve balls that require us to improvise a solution.
Then there are the surprises of Jesus that Don likes to talk about. Our Lord seams to delight in blowing us away by showing up in our circumstances. Like any father, our Heavenly Father is happy to make us happy.
Today I was surprised by a story of the extraordinary goodness of some of the guys in our church. It appears that Steve cooked up a plan to have Mark join him on a ministry trip to medical facility that is hosting one of our senior-most members, Kay. I’m pretty sure that Kay has filled out the paperwork to have Mark officially installed as the fourth person of the Trinity… mostly due to the way Mark plays the piano. When Mark took control of the approximately-in-tune piano in the community room for an hour, Mark literally brought a bit of Heaven to Kay and all those who gathered.
When I called Mark, I left a message on his voicemail saying, “I don’t know when I’ve been more proud to be anyone’s pastor.” I suppose it is one thing to have someone say “good sermon, pastor” on Sunday morning while we stuff ourselves with coffee and cookies after the service, but there is an entirely different level of gratitude and satisfaction that comes from hearing reports of Christlikeness displayed by members of our church outside of our walls, seven days a week.