The year 2013 has so far been a time for him to reflect on what it means to be a church elder. He does seem to like the term but never desire for it, for he knew it is a higher calling with greater duties that come upon it. But, this very year when he’s turning forty – where people say “life begins”- has edged him into an (church) elder category. Hesitant yet open and willing to obey, he still recall during local deliberation there was no one in objection – except himself – until he come to realize to accept it humbly without question.
“Who am i to refuse?”, said he. “If God’s willing for me to go to a mountain and I fail in my time, then God will let the mountain come to me in His time.”
In many ways he may not feel like an elder. He knows that a church elders’ role is beyond what many could think of, beyond some could imagine. Praying with loud cries, and quite often, they are at the frontline of struggles, and at times the silent martyrs in unnoticeable ways. This is what elders do.
Come the day of ordination, the making of an elder is about to begin in a midst of a huge crowd whose right hands are raised to express their support in this worthwhile thrust. Just before kneeling down, “I’m feeling (solemnly) nervous”, he whispered to a Bishop who is close-to-his-heart, whose smile back released his nerves. The moment has come when the laying of Apostle’s hands touch his spirit and soul; indeed, it’s more than a concluding act that makes a humble servant to be a humble shepherd…the moment that every elder of the church will always cherish in his heart.
He realized that being one among the ordained transcends himself to a greater field; it will bring many to see the light in that field and there you find – becoming a shepherd of a flock willing to serve than be served.
His reflection has led him to what an elder is all about according to 1 Peter 5:1-4.
“To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings
Who also will share in the glory to be revealed:
Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care,
Watching over them not because you must,
But because you are willing, as God wants you to be;
Not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve;
Not lording it over those entrusted to you,
But being examples to the flock.
And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive
The crown of glory that will never fade…”
He has been grateful for this thrust – so privileged to be one.
Becoming a church elder is becoming a trusted shepherd.
In God’s grace he will always confide and in prayers he shall keep remain.