A Sunday to Remember: My First Day as a Pastor

You must be Shannon!

Are you our new pastor?

With these and comments like it, I transitioned into a new phase of life as a pastor. It’s a new hat and one of several that I have worn throughout my young life. I’ve been a sports writer, a news writer, a public policy writer, and now I’m a pastor. In some ways, all that I have done previously in my life has prepared me for this day, and, in other ways, nothing that I have done before has prepared me for this day.

Today was unique, and it was a blessing to meet the people at Mackville and Antioch. It was unique in that I was starting, but I was not preaching at either worship. Both churches had lay preachers assigned, and I did not feel the need to change that. I can start next week just as easily as this week. We even helped out at both churches. Abbi led the singing at Mackville, and I led the prayers at Antioch.

Seminary doesn’t prepare you well enough for that first day as a pastor. Professors can teach theory and ideas all day long, but nothing prepares you for the responsibility of walking into a church knowing that you are the pastor. Just the pastor’s mere presence in the room changes everything, and that was something I was not fully prepared for today.

There is a lot to learn, and I am sure they will lead me as much as I will lead them. I’m not sure where the road will take us in the days, and weeks, and months ahead, but my hope is that we are obedient to God, lead with grace, and speak with the authority and love that comes from the Holy Spirit.

Now … to think about what the first sermon will be on.


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