At a conference a pastor saw my ministry business card and wanted to know what I do for Pastoral Care. I had to think about his question as my mind raced over all those acts of serving over the past 12 years that varied greatly. For me Pastoral Care is serving pastors or ministry leaders in whatever they require as God places them before me. God has given me a burden to serve this group of servants as part of ministry. As I walked into the office of the late Jack Brown at the Milwaukee Outreach, he turned away from his daily task on the computer, focused on what was on my mind and said, “Roger whatever you do, learn to serve.” Jack lived out ministry and serving. His physical act of putting me first above his ministry duties and giving me his undivided time, burns in my spirit as an example. With that always in the back of my mind I asked, “Lord, who and how do I serve?”
God just opens doors to those whom he wants me to serve. Giving of self over time schedules and commitment is key. Amazingly God carves out time when I am surrounded by ministry schedules and commitments. He just rearranges my calendar.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."
Pastoral Care is really showing the love of Christ. The love reflects in meeting a specific or general needs. It is always different. The key is listening to the Holy Spirit and just responding with no concern of the time, schedules or monetary cost. That willingness to respond has opened the door to profound experiences and friendships. The needs go from the very simple to a deep commitment. It may be 20 minutes to months or a year. From the act of listening to the physical service. Whatever the act of pastoral care looks like, it is always good knowing Christ gets the credit.