Saturday 27th September will be forever engrained on my memory. My Ordination Day and Induction at Worthing Tabernacle. It was such a precious day in so many ways – but it was also a ‘weighty’ day as I made promise’s before Almighty God and before a congregation of church members, family and friends:
Doug, before Almighty God and before this congregation, we ask you:
Do you believe in the One Triune God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and are you trusting Him for your salvation?
Reply: I do so believe and trust.
Do you believe that the Bible, both Old and New Testaments, is the Word of God and the only rule of faith and practice?
Reply: I do so believe and practice.
Is it your intention to love and serve the Lord your God and the members of Worthing Tabernacle, working together with your brothers in leadership, for the good of this local church and for the glory of the Lord?
Reply: By the grace of God it is.
Will you preach the Word of God, do the work of an evangelist, shepherd the flock and discharge your calling faithfully, according to the grace and the gifts given to you?
Reply: With God’s help I will.
Doug, in view of the promises you have made, we now commission you to serve as the Assistant Pastor of this church. May God bless you and be with you as you serve with us.
It’s a week on now from when I made those promises and as I reflect on them I am excited, but there is also the temptation to be scared. It is such a joy and a privilege to be called by God to look after his flock – but with that comes the responsibility to protect them and to not lead them astray – we know how God feels about those who lead his bride away from him. Thankfully Jonathan Stephen (my Principal from WEST) who preached at my induction reminded me that I am only an under-shepherd! Jesus is the great Shepherd of the sheep – and he has appointed me here to the Tab, it is not my stewardship – but his stewardship that he has given to me. And yes – that means I will one day have to give a special account for those who God has placed under my care – but I can look forward to that day with great hope, because it is He who by grace has put me in this situation and by grace He will be able to say “well done good and faithful servant”! It is God’s grace that I depend upon!
My induction and ordination day was such a sweet day full of importance and meaning. I am so blessed to have been able to share it with so many friends and family – and I know they will help me, and hold me to the promises I have made.
It is with great excitement and anticipation that I look forward to the next 4 years to see what God has planned and laid out for the church here in Worthing.
Finally these are the words used in my ordination. Precious words:
The Elders of Worthing Tabernacle have prayerfully examined Doug’s testimony, theology, gifts, character and his calling to ministry according to Holy Scripture (including 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9). We are pleased to affirm that this man is qualified to serve as a Christian Minister.
Under Christ, who is our head and the only source of our authority, we recognise Doug’s ministerial standing and by the symbolic act of the laying on of hands, we confer to him authority to exercise the prerogatives of ministry in the local church.