What We Believe
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March 2021 New Horizons

Current Issue

Caring for Your Pastor

 

Contents

Caring for Your Pastor

The Why and How of a Sabbatical for Your Pastor

Decoding a Secular Creed

Write a Letter to the Editor

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Caring for Your Pastor

Most of us have opinions about how an Orthodox Presbyterian pastor should care for the members of his congregation, but we often do not think about the reverse: How should Orthodox Presbyterian church members care for their pastor? What does a pastor need to encourage him in his ministry? Every aspect of a pastor’s life involves service to the church. Pastors take phone calls and pay visits at all hours. Evenings are often taken up with meetings and church events. Even as it is offered with a joyful heart in service to their King, these various acts of ministry affect the time that pastors can spend at home with their families. For a pastor’s children, their views of Christ and his church are often based in part on how the local church treats its minister—their daddy! As it says in 1 Corinthians 12, the body of Christ has many members, including eyes, ears, and hands. Each part of the body is essential, and each part should have “the same care for one another” (v. 25), since we all serve ... Read more

The Why and How of a Sabbatical for Your Pastor

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to spend time with a pastor in his home, just to see what life was like for him and his family? Years ago, in a previous church, I did exactly that. Just as we all sat down to supper and were about to pray, the phone rang. It was a member of the church calling to inform the pastor that a family member was in the hospital and might have some serious health issues. The member suggested, even insisted, that the pastor go at once to the hospital. The pastor hung up, kissed his wife goodbye, and headed off to the hospital, a forty-five-minute drive away. When he returned, I asked him and his wife if interruptions like this one happened often. Their response was that it was just part of the life of a pastor. The Need for Sabbaticals I am reminded of Elijah in 1 Kings 19, who was so weary of his prophetic work that he sought to withdraw. Jesus Christ himself, throughout the course of his ministry, often “withdrew to desolate places to pray” (Luke 5:16; ... Read more

Decoding a Secular Creed

They began appearing in front yards across the country this past summer. Suddenly. Overwhelmingly. I thought it would be a passing fad, but it looks like I was wrong. They persisted through the change of seasons, standing stalwartly next to campaign signs in the fall, and, as I write this, next to Santa and Rudolph. I imagine that by the time you are reading this, the signs will be greeting the spring blossoms in the gardens of your neighborhood. I am speaking of the ubiquitous “In this house, we believe …” yard signs. First seen in 2016 but surging in 2020, they are the latest of our culture’s virtue signals and apparently encapsulate the main tenets of a new and powerfully popular secular creed. Among the various versions of this sign, you will find some or all of the following declarations: Black lives matter. Women’s rights are human rights. No human is illegal. News isn’t fake. Water is life. Science is real. Love is love. Kindness is everything. Some of these statements ... Read more

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