Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest. Already the one who reaps is receiving wages and gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together. For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’ I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor.” John 4:3-38
This is always an exciting time of the year for graduates! Some are graduating from kindergarten, some from high school and still others from universities or seminaries. We have all of these happening in the Indiana District. While our church workers (Pastor, teachers, DCE’s and Deaconesses, etc.) are still a few days from graduating, they are receiving (or have received) their first calls/assignments.
After years of preparation they are now called and sent into the mission field! In many cases this will take them far from home and far from the communities where they were raised. It is very exciting and it can be a bit frightening. It’s new – it’s the real world – it’s real ministry.
It is also exciting for the church! New workers – new possibilities and great hopes. From pulpits to classrooms and to a wide range of ministry settings new beginnings and new challenges fill the hearts and minds of people everywhere! Some congregations are hoping for a continuation of their ministry style and others are hoping for a change and new energy!
Our church workers go to where they are called (like the early disciples, Paul & Silas and a host of other early Christians). They are called and sent to places where there is great need and great possibilities – not necessarily to easy places. We call it a Divine Call as the church worker and the church carefully and prayerfully seek to pair the needs of the Church with the gifts God has given to our graduates. In the LCMS this placing is a cooperative effort between the universities, seminaries, and District Presidents in response to requests from our congregations and schools. While this is never a perfect system, it is an awesome and exciting opportunity to seek God’s guidance as we look at each individual worker and need in a very personal way.
Please pray for the new workers that God is sending and calling into the mission field! Also pray to the Lord of the harvest for a continuing supply of workers to serve in the future. The truth is that we are running short on workers. We have a significant shortage of synod trained teachers to serve in our schools and we need more pastors to serve in our many congregations. The Indiana District is blessed in many ways – including church workers! We don’t have a lot of vacancies, but we are in need of school principals. Always encourage our brightest and best to consider church work as a career path!