This morning we will ordain and install those who have accepted the call to be elders for this church. They may think that they are here because someone on the nominating committee convinced them that they would be an asset to the session and that it wouldn’t require much of their time.
While some of that may be true they are truly here because they answered God’s call to be servants. They may be the ones who will move us into new territory in order to grow in faith and help spread the Good News of Jesus around. They may be the ones who will help us realize that we can’t and shouldn’t keep Jesus to ourselves. We all know it’s not about us; Jesus belongs to everyone. This work we are all called to is about all of us working together because we all need Jesus.
These five will be doing what God has called them to do and each member of this congregation has the responsibility to lift them up in prayer every day and minister to them in the same way Jesus ministered to his disciples.
Sometimes the work of the church seems just like the work of the secular world, taking care of the building and the finances and the personnel issues and on and on. The thing to remember is that it is important to the God’s mission for his church.
Every elder has different gifts that can be used to spread the good news and care for the body of Christ, the Church. Just as Jesus healed Peter’s mother-in-law and she immediately began to serve her family and their guests’ dinner so we are called to serve when we have been forgiven of our sins and have given our hearts to Jesus.
Each elder will be something different to different people in the same way Paul was different things to the different people he encountered as he told the Good News to those he met.
They, as well as all of us, need to remember the lesson from the Prophet that is hanging on the walls surrounding the sanctuary. The LORD, our God, never tires or needs rest. He provides and cares for us even when we get tired and stumble and fall. He is always there and he knows each one of us. When we trust in him he will make us strong again and we will soar like an eagle in the sky lifted up by the wind of the Holy Spirit.
Friends this is the good news Jesus taught the people in the temple and in the streets. God’s kingdom is here. He is our salvation and our strength. God is everything to us. Because of God’s good grace we are all forgiven; we are all saved. Being saved we are all called to be servants and to do service to those Jesus puts in the path we walk everyday.
Thanks be to God for his wondrous saving grace. Amen.