Kelly Walter, founding pastor at Rock Brook Church in Belton, MO., spoke at our recent commencement and challenged graduates to put this prayer at the top of their list: “God, let me humbly serve you in the authority of Jesus Christ.”
In 2 Peter 1, one of the closest friends of Jesus identified himself as Simon Peter. Pastor Walter said, “He’s both Simon, the humble fisherman from Galilee, and Peter, the one Jesus called the Rock. He maintained the tension between humility and authority.” The Apostle Peter knew firsthand how ego can affect one’s perspective and ministry. Simon Peter walked on water but began to drown when he took his eyes off Jesus. Later, Simon Peter valiantly stepped in with a sword to prevent Jesus from being captured, yet later denied he was associated with Jesus. Pastor Walter said, “Most people fail in ministry not because they can’t do the job or because they aren’t skilled in the performance of their duties. What gets them are character issues. They get destroyed by their hurts, habits and hang-ups.” No character flaw is more disastrous than pride.
Walter reminded the graduates that we serve in the authority of Jesus Christ. Henri Nouwen wrote, “It is Jesus who heals, not I; Jesus who speaks words of truth, Not I; Jesus who is Lord, not I.” We serve in the name of the Lord Jesus who sends us.
Walter concluded his message with this reminder:
This message came from God. You can be confident in it. The Bible is worth giving your life to. It’s worth understanding. It’s worth knowing. It’s worth living.
The time, energy, and resources that you put into your Rockbridge education are worth it. But more importantly, the time, energy, and resources that you will put into ministry going forward from this date are worth it.
Take the knowledge that you have received; put it together with the glorious power and precious promises of God and serve Him humbly and with Christ’s authority until you hear Him say “Well done, good and faithful servant!”
Seminary graduation reminds us of God’s transforming power when servant leaders pray:
“God, let me humbly serve you in the authority of Jesus Christ.”
End of Our Fiscal Year
We close our financial year on July 31. Our mission to develop servant leaders for Christian ministry is possible because of the gifts of people like you. Please help us disciple leaders who disciple the world. You may send your check to Rockbridge Seminary, 3111 East Battlefield, Springfield, MO 65804 or give online.