“I am certain that many frustrations pastors feel come from a lack of discipline. Not only can regular devotional life and serious Bible study easily go by the wayside, but days can be frittered away fiddling on the insignificant and the little nothings. Without a pattern and discipline of meditation and prayer, study, sermon preparation, visitation, and relaxation the minister will accomplish little and become shallow and sluggish.”
– John Drescher.
Maybe this quote means little to you after reading it, sort of light and airy, fluffy and meaningless like a vast majority of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s flaky quote-writing (Hitch your wagon to a star…). But this quote carries meaning for me because this simple, humble man came to my seminary last year and through a simple, humble message tore me from limb to limb inside. I promise I’m not exaggerating this. His 45 minutes in my life was the most hard 45 minutes I’ve ever experienced.
Why? He loved God. He knew God. His presence that day was not unlike Gandalf in the beginning of the Fellowship of the Ring, when he had to use that shadow trick with the booming voice to get Bilbo to give up the ring…but much less scary. There are very few people I’ve had the benefit of being exposed to in my life who have carried the presence Drescher carried. A presence cultivated through simple, pure (as pure as possible) commitment to Jesus. Not complex at all, but most folks don’t have the stones to discipline their lives to structure them around the pursuit of God consistently. I’d put myself in that category at this point. Time will tell if I emerge to embrace and pursue this discipline.
Time will tell.