I have appointed you
as a watchman for Israel."
The old man thought for a moment, and then continued to write out his sermon for Sunday:
A watchman always stands on something high, so that he can see off in the distance whatever might be coming. It’s hard to preach this. My own words come back to judge me. I cannot preach that well. But, when I do, I still face the fact that I do not live up to what I’m saying…
With my mind so filled up and muddle with so many problems, how can I have personal time with God or stand up and speak without neglecting the one thing that matters – preaching the Gospel?
On top of that, in my day to day work as a pastor, I regularly have to meet with some pretty worldly people. Sometimes, I just let my conversation go wherever. If I tell them what I really think of sin, all them would avoid me. So, I never tell them what they need to hear. Because of this, I’ve learned to smile and listen to a lot of idiotic small talk. And, because I’m too weak to resist, I find pretty soon I’m pulled right into the conversations. Soon, there I am, happily telling stories or laughing at things I had promised to avoid. And, soon, what I once found a major distraction to ministry I end up finding I still enjoy.
So, what right do I have to be a watchman for God’s people? I don’t go up and stand on high on some mountain of real commitment. No, I end up lying down in the valley of my own spiritual weakness.
A Homily on Ezekiel
Pastor of city of Rome
anno Domini 590-604
We are not Piccards, boldly going where no one has gone before.
The long road of Christian leadership is well worn.