There are several reasons we will pause to give thanks to God on this special day. Certainly faith, family, and the abundance God’s provision are among the many blessings we enjoy, but I want to share a few reasons why preachers can be especially grateful on Thanksgiving Day–and every day.
- Our work is deeply meaningful. All work is sacred when we know the Lord is our ultimate supervisor (Colossians 3:23-24), but preachers enjoy a vocation especially meaningful in regularly pointing people to the One from Whom all blessings flow, the Giver of every good and perfect gift (James 1:17). God’s calling in our lives guarantees we will always be involved in especially meaningful labor.
- We experience the joy of weekly preaching. Is there any activity more life-giving than regularly proclaiming the good news? Thank God He has called you into a ministry where you get to preach the gospel weekly! While burdensome and challenging at times, the compulsion to preach is a divine call motivated primarily by joy (Philippians 1:18).
- God works through our imperfections. Amazingly, God saves souls through our flawed preaching. That He does so is no excuse for indolence or lack of preparation, but rather is a call for praise to the One Who superintends our preaching in order to accomplish His perfect will. We study, pray, and do our very best, but ultimately we rest in a sovereign God Who uses broken vessels to call souls to Himself.
- We get to see God change lives. One of the greatest joys of preaching is seeing people come to faith in Christ. When we see lives transformed by the gospel, we are energized as nothing else can energize us. We may go many weeks or months before witnessing true, life-change, but when it happens, we bow before God and receive new strength for future ministry.
- We grow when serving others. A minister once joked, “God called me into ministry because He knew I needed to be in church three times a week!” While uttered tongue in cheek, the minister’s greater point was preachers benefit personally from work they do largely for others. Whether preaching, leading worship, or counseling others, pastors themselves are continually challenged by God’s Word and enjoy numerous opportunities for spiritual growth.
- Our work allows our family to join us. Unlike vocations offering little opportunity for the presence of one’s spouse or children, our family gathers regularly with us as we preach the Word and serve the church. While being a ministry family can be difficult at times, the benefits far outnumber the challenges.
Preachers: what are some other reasons we may be especially grateful today?