By Dr. Kevin Thomas —
Every job matters! I remember the excitement of my first pastoral appointment. At the age of 22, it felt special to add the title “Reverend” to the front of my name. I proudly introduced myself around town as the new pastor at Musgrove Chapel and White Springs United Methodist Churches. Even though I was the youngest adult in either church, I relished the fact that I was in charge. I had a special voice in committee. I helped to design our ministry. I stood before the congregation each week to speak. When we are young, it’s easy to be impressed with our own importance.
During my first winter as a pastor, I had a revelation that altered my somewhat pompous attitude. It was a blistery cold morning in Alabama with temperatures dipping into the teens. My car didn’t even warm up in my short, one-mile commute. Walking up to the front door of Musgrove Chapel, I wondered just how many of my members would brave the cold to come to worship. I inserted my key in the lock, turned the door knob, and stepped into a toasty, warm sanctuary. One of the men of the church had come at 5:00 that Sunday morning to light the gas space heaters, the only heat the building had. As I prepared to greet my members that morning, a poignant question entered my mind. “Who is really more important, the pastor who brings the message, or the man who lights the heaters on a cold Sunday morning?” The question is actually misleading. Both are important. Both are vital for the sharing of the Gospel. We make a critical mistake when we value one part of the team more than the team itself!
You are a vital part of Forest Lake United Methodist. Every miniscule act of service, every penny given, every prayer offered makes a difference. When the entire body of Christ comes together, each one doing his or her part, then we will create the life that God intends for Tuscaloosa and beyond!