On this day, July 6, in the year 1980, on an impossibly hot Sunday afternoon, at Golgotha Lutheran Church in rural Wausa, Nebraska, I was ordained and consecrated a minister of Christ's holy catholic church (the actual words from the ordination rite). Hands were laid on me. A red stole and chasuble were placed upon me. I remember that day like it was yesterday and, in so many ways, I feel today just as unprepared and clueless to fulfill the holy office conferred upon me as I was then. But I have had a bit more experience along the way and it has not been without its salutary effect. Yet, as I grow older, I am more conscious of my failings than my strengths, my mistakes than my successes, and my need for the sufficient grace to forgive what I have done wrong, perfect what I have left incomplete, and humble what pride has built up... Then, as now, Luther's prayer is both reflection of me and my desire -- not only prayed but lived out within the parameters of my sinful nature redeemed by the blood of Christ.
Oh, Lord God, Thou hast made me a pastor and teacher in the Church. Thou seest how unfit I am to administer rightly this great and responsible Office; and had I been without Thy aid and counsel I would surely have ruined it all
long ago. Therefore, do I invoke Thee. How gladly do I desire to yield and consecrate
my heart and mouth to this ministry! I desire to teach the congregation. I, too,
desire ever to learn and keep Thy Word my constant companion, and to meditate
thereupon earnestly. Use me as Thy instrument in Thy service, Only do not Thou
forsake me, for if I am left to myself, I will certainly bring it all to destruction. Amen.
Amen, though iindividual believers are not ministers (contrary to what many evangelicals think), we are all in the same boat as ministers. We are all unfit unless Christ covers us with His blood and righteousness.
God has been gracious to bring us into the LCMS, and we both are thankful He chose for us the minister He did!
Dave and Jan
Congratulations and God's blessings on the anniversary of your ordination!
Congratulations and sincere best wishes to a faithful pastor.
God's richest blessings on the anniversary of your ordination.
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