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THEY CALL ME PASTOR

By September 7, 2014 35 Comments

Slide1

Being a pastor is not something to which I aspired.

It certainly wasn’t a childhood dream.

By nurture, I’m a people person.

By nature, I’m a loner. (My teenage ambition was to be a hermit. Really)

I’m like a turtle on a fence post.

When you see a turtle on a fence post you know it didn’t get there on its own – someone put it there.

My fence post is a platform of genuine love for the people God has entrusted to my care.

CONNECTIONS

Like most pastors, the most common connections with people happen…
on a Sunday in the foyer of our ministry campus,
preaching/teaching,
praying,
supporting volunteers,
meeting for a plethora of purposes,
participating in community outreaches,
answering seekers’ questions,
or officiating a wedding, a baby dedication or a celebration of some sort.

My most enduring connections are with people…
in crisis,
going through a divorce,
facing debilitating distress,
who are suddenly bereaved,
who have a loved one in need of help,
who have been given a terminal diagnosis,
who don’t know where else to turn and call for help.

We cry together,
struggle together,
pray together,
mourn together,

heal together.

Those circumstances create timeless connections.

We bond because of the shared pain and mercy.
We become like “family.”
We are warrior/brothers/sisters because we have shed sweat, tears and blood together.
We can pick up a conversation after many months or even years of separation as though it was only a matter of minutes.

CHANGE

Every so often, one of those connections does not stand the test of time or trouble.

Seemingly out of the blue there is a change.

When my leadership,
spiritual insight,
ministry,
vision,
friendship,

are no longer adequate for their,
preference/need/circumstance,

and a close friend/co-worker/congregant
chooses to no longer be an ally,

I have to say,
“Ouch,”

and then,
“Grace and peace to you.”

…and continue to nurture and focus on the people still in my care.

I’d like to say that I have learned not to let such experiences of loss affect me, but I haven’t.

I’ve concluded that pain is the price of caring and vulnerability.
Jesus understood that.

After all,

who was it that experienced the first, “Judas Kiss?”

LEAN INTO JESUS

My pastoral ministry has spanned thirty-six years, however in many ways I feel like a rookie.

I suppose that’s good because it means that each day brings new,
challenges,
complexities,
opportunities,
ways of doing things, and
ways of dealing with life.

The newness compels me to lean hard into Jesus.

SPICY EXPERIENCE

No two days of ministry are EVER the same.

Variety is the spice of life and my pastoral experience is 5-pepper spicy.

There is nothing I would rather be doing in this season of my life than being a pastor.

For someone, someday, to say that my life helped influence/inspire/motivate them to open their heart to the calling of pastoral ministry, would be my highest commendation.

Til then,
I will keep the faith,
fight the good fight,
run with perseverance,
long for His appearing,
forget what is behind, and
press toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me.

APPLICATION: Pray for your Pastor and their family. Please leave a comment below.


I write to inspire people to be real, grow an authentic faith in Jesus, enjoy healthy relationships and discover their life purpose. If this material is helpful to you, please follow me.

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Bob Jones

Author Bob Jones

Pastor at North Pointe Community Church for 27 years. Happily married to Jocelyn for 38 years. We have two adult sons, Cory and his wife Lynsey and their son Vinnie; Jean Marc and his wife Angie and their three gorgeous daughters, Quinn, Lena and Annora. I love being a pastor and inspiring faith in Jesus through communicating, blogging, counseling and coaching. I enjoy running, reading, writing and ball hockey. Fan of the Esks and Pats. Follow me on Twitter @bobjones49ers

More posts by Bob Jones

Join the discussion 35 Comments

  • Northpointe, where the people are real, including the pastor. Thanks for being ours.

  • Wendy Connors says:

    We are so blessed and ever so grateful for the way God uses you. Thank you for your sincere love and concern and for being transparent and real. You are a genuine and true man of God. Simply said … we love you Bob and we love Jocelyn the same, you are an amazing team! May God bless you both.

  • bob jones says:

    Thanks, Tim! You are the real deal.

  • bob jones says:

    Thank you, Wendy. I thank the Lord you found North Pointe because so may people at North Pointe have found acceptance, encouragement and faith because of your leadership.

  • Mike Hendrick says:

    Very blessed I was to be able to call you my pastor as a little boy growing up in Montreal with Fred Day at Lakeshore, now even more blessed to reconnect over the years here on your blog and look forward to connecting in person with you on one of my many adventures up north as I travel to westlock

  • Ken Clarke says:

    Thanks for being “real” Pastor Bob! I do pray for you too!

  • bob jones says:

    Lots of good memories, Mike! Looking forward to connecting at NP. Drop in some time during the week on your way to Westlock.

  • bob jones says:

    Thanks Ken for praying. Great to be in Ironman with you.

  • Rick and Jan Kelly says:

    We have been blessed by your leadership, compassion and willingness to listen. We always pray for you and Joycelyn to have continued strength as you minister to a growing diverse congregation. God is truly using you for His Kingdom!

  • Wendy Connors says:

    I must say, that is a very beautiful yet powerful photo. It’s a keeper! 🙂

  • Keith H Bishop says:

    Good comments Bob! You’re the real deal and that blesses me!

  • bob jones says:

    Thanks Rick and Jan…so good to partner with you in leadership.

  • bob jones says:

    🙂

  • bob jones says:

    Thanks, Keith. Great to be with you in Sylvan Lake.

  • adena lowry says:

    One of the main reasons we LOVE Northpointe is the clarity and thought process of your message each Sunday. I’ve often walked away amazed by the way the message is presented with such creativity. I can’t believe the way we made it to the end of the sermon from the beginning. Thank you for your leadership Pastor Bob.
    I needed to hear this. It also relates to the life of a teacher. Your words were an answer to my prayer today. Weird.

  • Tara Sinanan says:

    As Senior Pastor of our church, I pray for you and your family early every morning. I pray for all our Pastors and their families and all those who serve and give of their
    time. Almost 15 years ago, I listened to your message and I’m still listening today.
    I choose to call you ‘ A GOOD Pastor’ You are a teacher ( I told you that several
    years ago. I feel blessed to be a part of North Pointe Church and your leadership.
    God is a GOOD GOD, he led me to be a part of your Pastoral care.. I needed it!
    Til then……….continue to keep the Faith.

  • bob jones says:

    Thank you, Tara. You are TOO good to me.

  • bob jones says:

    Glad the words were timely for you, Adena. I trust this coming Sunday will be another gathering when you and your family are encouraged in your relationship with Jesus through North Pointe’s ministry.

  • Pastor Bob I have your six. Blessings

  • bob jones says:

    You made you think. What’s a “6?” “6:00 is what lies behind you, the potential peril you can’t see. On a
    battlefield, your 6:00 position is the most vulnerable. So, when someone
    tells you that they’ve “Got Your 6,” it means they’re watching your
    back. By extension, that person expects you to have their back as well.” That is such a powerful image. Thanks, Craig. I’ve got your six.

  • Lonya D'Orsay says:

    Pastor Bob I made one of those enduring connections with you five years ago. I am forever grateful for your kindness and guidance. I am blessed to call you my pastor.

  • bob jones says:

    It has been enduring and endearing. It was and still is wonderful to see the grace of God at work in your health and family.

  • Carole Schlachta says:

    You too hard on yourself. I remember with fondness you gifted leading in worship at LEC. Remember the morning, I was in the choir behind where Pastor Day was sitting, you had been leading us in worship and you put your hand on the pulpit, said to the congregation, “I am going to stand back and let God take over . You backed up and suddenly there was a rush of wind that whipped down from the back of the sanctuary right up on the platform. I heard it and felt it. Pastor Day jumped up and turned and said to me, “Did you feel that?” I shall never, never forget that. We were blessed.
    I have always appreciated time you and Dino prayed with Doug at a retreat and he te

  • Carole Schlachta says:

    You told me he had received a gift as well as his baptism. That gift was discernment. Ptl.
    I will always appreciate your work with the youth, the closeness of your walk with God.
    You are a very modest, humble person but Oh my the wonderful wisdom God has given you shines more and more each day I read your teaching. G

  • Carole Schlachta says:

    I know this is long. Please forgive me but I felt I should remind you and let others see that through you and your walk with God, we were blessed all the way across Canada to Quebec. Thank you Lord

  • bob jones says:

    Thanks Carole. Lots of great memories of times at Lakeshore. Hardly seems like 25 years ago. Thank you for sharing!

  • I’ve re-read this and each time I find myself pausing to reflect and give thanks!

  • Evelyn Clark says:

    Hi Pastor Bob, I know we aren’t frequent visitors there and I’m not sure what’s going on to bring such a reflective view of your service, but I felt a need to offer encouragement. Whenever I’ve been out of sorts and end up at your church, you have been clear, you have been encouraging, you have a message that shows me how to follow up in my life once I’ve left that Sunday, Your messages are relevant and on time and have always reverberated in my being as in line with truth… something I can trust… and something I can back up in the scriptures. So my point… thank you for being there, it is helping to bring me back into fellowship with other believers instead of staying at home and picking and choosing when to trust someone elses point of view.

  • bob jones says:

    Thanks for commenting Evelyn and I am glad your experiences at North Pointe are enriching. I wrote simply to pull back the curtain on pastoral ministry in my own life and I believe in the lives of most pastors. One of our values at North Pointe is for people “to be real.” This was one way I could live out the value. Being real requires vulnerability. Vulnerability puts a person at risk. Vulnerability is worth the risk. Looking forward to seeing you the next time you are at North Pointe. God bless!

  • Gavin Brisco says:

    Really appreciated this. Reading this as a pastor, it gives such encouragement to persevere through the struggles and to celebrate through times of growth and joy. Pleasure meeting you and Jocelyn this past summer at Alberta Beach Camp.

  • bob jones says:

    Thanks, Gavin for your feedback. Great meeting you at ABC as well. The Lord give you a long and effective ministry as a pastor – lots of times to celebrate and a short memory on the other times.

  • Raquel del Valle says:

    Thanks for your article. I did enjoy reading and is encouraged with what you do for the Lord and His people. You are truly a faithful servant of Jesus. Rene and I are always encouraged by you and the other associate pastors and staff at NPCC. God bless you all for your ministry and care for His church.

  • Christian Mark Luha says:

    Being a pastor is a great opportunity to be a life saver and being a HERO . Great power comes great responsibility.Thank you so much Pastor Bob for opening my heart again and thank you also too Pastor Charity as she was the instrument used by God for me to attend the service.I really believed that if God loves you and he has a purpose to your life ,he will make a way to win us back on his side because Jesus LOVES US.Amen

  • Gilberto (Gil) Dimas says:

    Thank you for the honest, and inspiring words. I have known you almost since you arrived in Edmonton. I thank you for being a role model of what it means to be a pastor when culture and church are both challenging and changing.

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