Brian Croft of The Gospel Coalition posted this sobering review of Eugene H. Peterson’s Book The Pastor: A Memoir.
Be careful that your calling and ministry is evaluated by Scripture, not experience.
Although there is merit in the way God prepares a man for ministry through his experiences, Peterson placed an uncomfortable amount of focus on experience as that which identifies a pastor, instead of the biblical qualifications clearly mapped out for us in Scripture (1 Tim. 3:1-7, Titus 1:5-9, 1 Peter 5:1-4). In fact, the book ironically entitled, The Pastor, was eerily silent on the issues of internal and external calling in Scripture. According to this volume, which recounts Peterson’s personal experience and call as a pastor, calling is to be evaluated based on the happenstances of life instead of Scripture. Be careful that you do not evaluate your calling, pursuit of pastoral ministry, or your level of faithfulness in ministry by your experience alone…
Pastors, make sure as we reflect back on our own ministries that not just our experiences with our flock come to our minds. A confidence in God’s sovereignty, the hope of justification by faith alone in Christ, and the unchangeable attributes of our great God could never be absent as we share about those experiences, especially, if you are that unique gift of an older pastor.
You can read the full post here.