Strive to Be Ordinary

Today I had the privilege of sitting in the shadow of ten giants of the church.  Ray Van Neste and nine pastoral ministry students at Union University graciously and patiently endured my rambling thoughts on pastoral ministry.  For those (or the one) so interested here is the manuscript.  Sweet dreams.

5 thoughts on “Strive to Be Ordinary

  1. Barry,

    Thanks for posting this, very convicting and encouraging. I found this paragraph to be particularly humbling:

    “So, striving to be ordinary is far more difficult than striving to be extraordinary. We don’t need help wanting to be known, stroked and applauded. We need help wanting to be unknown. What we need is grace and faith and strength to pastor 40 people for 40 years through rough waters, marrying and burying a few generations.”

    Thanks again brother,

  2. Barry,

    I would echo William’s comment. I sat here pondering the gravity and satisfaction of pastoring the people at Manchester Creek for 40 years, through rough waters, marrying and burying A FEW GENERATIONS. Wow, I needed to hear this today. What a privilege it is to serve the LORD in his church!

    Serving King Jesus,


  3. So, what I’m sensing is that we should hold a pastors’ conference themed, “Together for the Ordinary Pastors” (TOP, for short). We’ll pitch it “A TOP conference for those not aspiring to get there.” Shall I consider you both keynote speakers?

  4. Dear Barry,

    I was reminded of our old blogship (that’s my word for friendship made through blogging) when I heard of a friend who has begun attending Southern Hills Baptist Church, so I came looking for your blog again.

    How thankful I am that God pointed me here this evening. My dear wife and I read the essay together, and have been richly blessed. The most helpful point to me was the concept of filling the disciples’ tummies with good gospel before giving them their medicine. What an image!

    I thank the Lord for the good word He has helped you share here.

    Love in Christ,


    1. What a blessing to hear from you again, Jeff. You’ve picked your encouragement right where it left off!

      Glad to hear of your friend attending SHBC. I’ve since left after God provided some ministry in our hometown. But the ministry there flourishes even more under our co-pastor.

      Pray things are well in your world.

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