In this edition, Keith Whitfield talks with Bruce Ashford about how Christians can be faithful in their seemingly competing callings to the church, family, work, and community. How do you reconcile or balance these callings from God?
You can take this to the bank: O. S. Hawkins is a good man whose many years of faithful ministry has earned him a hearing. Hawkins, currently the President and C.E.O. of Guidestone Financial Resources, recently published The Pastor’s Guide to Leading & Living (Thomas Nelson, 2012), in which he brings to bear 20 years of experience as a pastor in order to encourage pastors in their calling. In his view, “the pastor has been given by the Sovereign Lord the highest calling in God’s economy. It is not a vocation to be chosen among several options. It is a divine supernatural calling from the Lord” (p. 5).
To explicate the nature of this calling, The Pastor’s Guide addresses the personal and ministerial facets of a pastor’s life. Hawkins examines topics such as the pastor’s purpose, power, prayer life, priorities, and parenting (to list a few). His commitment to the integrity and significance of pastoral ministry is clear, and his heart for pastors is admirable. Most of all, he desires for pastors to know whom they serve: “Pastor, you do not have a ministry. It is not yours. You are a steward and an ambassador. You have received a ministry from the Lord Jesus” (p. 9). Hence, this book makes a helpful primer for those considering pastoral ministry.
N.B. All royalties from book sales will go to Mission: Dignity, a charitable fund that aids retired pastors and widows who are in financial need.