I realized yesterday that some of you may have not have heard the news.
Pastor Janke has decided to decline nomination as district president at this summer’s district convention. Since I was originally assigned to St. Peter as a pastoral assistant to the district president, obviously, it means change for us. Since that news was announced, Pastor Janke also received a call to serve at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Jefferson, WI.
So while I know that things will change around here, I have no idea how. It’s possible that we might both continue to serve here. One of us might take a call elsewhere. Both of us could take a call. In any case, it will mean change.
But I don’t even attempt to know which path would be better or which I would prefer. At this point in time, I have one Call, and that is to serve as pastor at St. Peter. And since that is the case, there is nothing else I would rather do. Ever since I have been here, I have understood that things would likely not stay the same for very long. Until that point, all I will do is to continue to serve as faithfully as possible in this vocation.
For several years, I have found this prayer to be helpful to me in so many situations. This is no exception. I have the german prayer framed by the door to my study. It’s from a lecture by C.F.W. Walther, given to future pastors, and recorded in the book The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel. Roughly translated… (I don’t have the translation with me. I think the quote is around page 70 of the English.)
O, my dear Lord Jesus, you are mine, therefore I wish to be yours. Everything that I do and have, my body and soul, my abilities and gifts, my entire life should be consecrated to you, to you alone. Lay upon me whatever you wish, and I will gladly bear it. Lead me always, through pain or joy, through fortune or misfortune, lead me through shame or honor, through people’s favor or their disfavor, lead me through a long life, or should I die an early death: I will rejoice in it all. Only go before me, I will follow you!