What an honor to be named ‘pastor emeritus’ of the church I retired from. An undeserved privilege. Until I start leafing through my ‘Thesaurus of Slang’. Why my eyes latch onto the word ’emeritus’ is beyond me.
Here are the synonyms. You decide why I shouldn’t return that blasted book. ‘Emeritus’–‘on the shelf, out of circulation, over the hill, passed it, a once was, has-been, hung up one’s spurs, old-timer.’ Enough, already! What a bunch of hooey. I want my money back!
Don’t imagine my church family discussed those ducky and dandy descriptions when they chose me as their only ’emeritus pastor’ in the church’s one hundred and twenty year history. Or did they? Someone may have some explaining to do!
Nevertheless, when I retired from the United Christian Church, a much younger man became their pastor. We moved away, and one reason was to get out of his way. To give him breathing room. Without people turning to me first, which they were used to. Giving him space to grow, making changes, as the old goat, me, moves aside. Emeritus!
John the Baptist says this of Jesus–‘He must increase, but I must decrease’ (John 3:30 KJV). That makes me think. Maybe you know of someone who needs you to step aside so that they can have an opportunity. To increase, to spread their wings, even making mistakes as we all do. To find the direction of the Holy Spirit without you barging in. Moving forward rather than backwards.
How about letting go of something that’s moved Jesus off center stage in your heart and life? Ring any bells? Move aside. Let it go. Get out of the way. The Lord always has something better for you. What you’re now reading is His next job for me. And I love it!
How about you? Ready? Get set! Let go!
Thank you, Lord, for new opportunities to serve you and others. Amen.