By Gary Shogren, Seminario ESEPA, San José, Costa Rica
Much of my formative ministry experience took place at a summer Bible Conference in New Hampshire. What I would see was a famous preacher speaking to a crowd of 500 people every morning and night, wowing them with his expositions. In fact, it was sitting in one session where I sensed God’s call for me to go into ministry.
Because of that background, I pictured “pastoral ministry” as me standing in front of a huge crowd, expounding the Bible for an hour, then setting them loose to, well, be Christians. As it turns out, that is not what happens, nor should it happen that way. Paul did not teach that way. If I can use an illustration that I mean without any hint of condescension, being a pastor is less like giving a college lecture, and more like kindergarten where the “teacher” sits next to the students, to show them how to use the scissors, the paste, the sparkles. As the old army statement goes, “Don’t tell a soldier what to do, show him.”