Two Great Challenges for the Pastor

In a plug for the great puritan Thomas Watson's book, All Things For Good, it is said that Watson "believed he faced two great difficulties in his pastoral ministry. The first was making the unbeliever sad, in the recognition of his need for God's grace. The second was making the believer joyful in response to God's grace."

I think he's right, and there are so many implications. Let's settle for 2 in general:

1. May we pray for and plead with unbelievers that they may understand both the emptiness and terror of being without God's grace. May they catch a glimpse of the glory of God's grace as found in Christ and mourn the lack of it. And may we never assume that all in our churches are believers...

2. May we personally be filled with joy in the knowledge of God's grace on our behalf, and may all believers rejoice and live in the strength of such joy in the Lord. And may unbelievers become believers by God's grace through the witness of our lives and words.

These things are reality when the gospel is the "glory of God in the face of Christ (2 Corinthians 4.3-6)." To see His glory is to desire Him above all else. It is to mourn the lack of His grace or to rejoice in the presence of it. His glory and our joy in it is always the issue.

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