What's an elder to be, or not to be? That was the question. Then we looked at What's an elder to do. Besides that, we prayed and laughed and ate and had a good time.
Thirty-eight men—from our FiveStone partner and supporting churches—joined in this year's multi-day Rock Conference. Our driving point: an elder can't rightly do the work of shepherding the Lord's people unless he's rightly walking with Him. That means pursuing the Lord's mind through the Lord's word and prayer and living in the sharpening that comes from shouldering the work with other men.
In light of these things, who are elders to be? They must be like Jesus, which is so commonly said these days that it sounds close to trite. The challenge from Romans 8 is being willing to be conformed into Him. As we looked at the context of Romans 8:29, it was clear that we must learn to respond to the difficulties of this world as Christ responded to them. His example is exemplified in the Servant-song of Isaiah 50:4-9. Shepherds are to be men of courage (Acts 4:18-20), men of faith (Hebrews 11), men of the gospel (Colossians 2:6-7).
We gave each man coasters of granite that were etched with the 5Stone logo. Stones in granite. He is our foundation rock. There must be no other. We are to be built into Him and on Him (1 Corinthians 3:10-11). I hope the men will keep those coasters in eye-view to remind them of their calling.
If He's called a man to do shepherding work, He will shape that man into who he needs to be in order to do the work He's called him to do. He promised that to Moses, and delivered (Exodus 3-4). That's His comforting promise to each of us. We need to be willing to be and then do.
Click here to see an album of photos from The Rock Conference.