As many of you know, I have been interning with Castleview Baptist Church in Indianapolis this summer. It has been a fruitful and edifying experience. I have learned much from it and feel I have a better biblical foundation for ministry than before. With just a few days left of this 10-week internship, I wanted to share with you some of what I have learned. I could list a ton of things I have gained but a few certain takeaways stand out. Surely, this includes intentionality on discipleship, the weight of responsibility for a pastor, and the importance of being a faithful church member.
Probably the biggest takeaway from this internship was the intentionality on discipleship and relationships. Looking back, I realize this has not been a strong point in my life. I have not actively and consistently discipled someone nor have I been intentional in seeking opportunities to be discipled. To see how Eric, the senior pastor, as well as the other pastors/elders emphasize relationships and discipleship has made a great impact. The intentional meetings with the elders, deacons, and church members were actually some of the most beneficial parts of the internship! Moving forward, I want to make intentional discipleship a priority in my life.
The second thing I have learned through this internship is the weight of responsibility a pastor has been entrusted with by God. As servants of Christ and stewards of God’s gospel (1 Corinthians 4:1-2), pastors are called to lead and live by example. This means being a man of character and leading sacrificially. The areas of church membership and church discipline are not easy doctrines to deal with nor are they always welcomed by those in the church. Yet, if a pastor wants to be faithful to the Word of God, then he must be willing to face difficult issues such as these. Case in point, a pastor must be faithful with as much as he has been entrusted with and must fear God rather than men.
A third, and a more surprising, takeaway this internship has taught me is learning what it means to be a faithful church member. I say this is more surprising because it was not a point I particularly would have thought I would come away with in a pastoral internship. Nevertheless, caring for one another, praying for one another, serving one another, and all the other “one anothers” in the New Testament have really gripped me this summer as I have thought about what it means to be a more faithful church member. Regardless of what happens in the future in the context of vocational ministry, the reminder of faithful church membership is still to be applied and it will. The body of Christ is a community of believers sharing in Christ and being one for His sake. In short, I thank God and Castleview for an amazing opportunity to have learned these things this summer.