Stress can really bring students down. Especially when there are graduation plans, paying attention to calls from churches, PhD applications, and staying in touch with the Calvin Theological Seminary Registrars office. Yeah, that’s exciting, but stressful. What happens to the ongoing faith formation?
For students who have a few more years ahead of them, we take those times of meditation on God’s word, contemplation on call, and sincere prayers of adoration for God for granted. When the hands of time get spinning too fast during our last semester, we need to remember that what we learned about faith formation is important to pastors caring for themselves. We need to exegete ourselves with the above spiritual disciplines before beginning to exegete any sermon. From the way it’s presented here at CTS, it would seem that the languages and resources are the most important. In my opinion, the spiritual disciplines are formational factors of determining who we are as missionaries, pastors, and community developers. In the programs, business, and administration of ministry let’s not get oddly shaped into being someone who is not identifiably a servant of Jesus.
Stress and faith formation are to be dealt with in a healthy way. And spiritual disciplines are part of a staying in touch with the important things in your community. There is more to the big picture of being a pastor than juggling the hats of hermeneutics. It’s being a genuine person who God can use as a servant minister.
By Ronald Hunsucker