Pastor Dan Smyth
THOUGHTS ON RETIREMENT
SOMEONE ONCE SAID: "Don't Resent Growing Old,
Many are Denied That Privilege"
LIFE IS FULL OF CHANGES. We move from infancy to childhood, then on into adolescence, and young adulthood. Each stage of life is different and filled with new opportunity. The stages of adulthood is often filled with a career, following by marriage and children and - eventually - the empty nest. Some of life's transitions are predictable although others may catch us by surprise.
THE DECISION TO STEP BACK INTO RETIREMENT and aside from my life's work was not an easy one for me. I have loved being one of your Pastors and especially since St. Mark is our home church here in Greenwood. I heard of a well-known preacher who persisted in his work long after he should have retired until one day someone had to take him by the elbow and gently lead him out of the pulpit because he wasn't speaking coherently. So-far-so-good, that has not happened to me.
However, AFTER MUCH PRAYER, the Lord reminded me that each church is - A COMMUNITY OF FAITH. We all have a calling as we serve in church. As the Apostle Paul reminds us,
"My job was to plant the seed, and Apollos was called to water it.
Any Growth Comes From God."
1 Corinthians 3:6 (VOICE)
So retirement is not putting me out to pasture. As I move into this stage of life - a time to rest from my labors officially - I am looking for new opportunities to serve in church as we are all called to do. The older generation should be mindful of our responsibility to pray for others. I will have more time to interact and life up those who are younger - carrying heavy loads. Because I know - MINISTRY IS DIFFICULT WORK AND MENTORS ARE NEEDED. I also will have more time now to do some things I have always wanted to do, such as meet with young Pastors and encourage them in their ministries. It encourages me to see what God continues to do through others.
IT IS A PRIVILEGE TO GROW OLDER. And as I do - I am remembering that in each generation, God raises up New Witnesses, New Messengers, and New Ministers, for which we can all be thankful. Some will plant, others will water, but it is God who gives the growth. THANKS BE TO GOD.
See you in Church,