Washington D.C.-area Pastor Preaches at Chapel
By Rachel Judy | September 27, 2012
Rev. John Jenkins
Rev. John Jenkins, pastor of First Baptist Church of Glenarden, is the first to admit that, on paper, he is not qualified to pastor a church that boasted 11,000 in attendance just last week. Speaking to faculty, students and staff at Regent University's weekly chapel service on Wednesday, September 26, Jenkins emphasized the fact that his role as pastor comes not from qualifications, but out of a call from God.
The Scripture he used was Jeremiah
12:1-5, which tells of the Israelites complaining to God for the challenges they were facing. "Has anyone here ever felt like God abandoned them?" Jenkins asked the audience. "[The Israelites] watched others get their freedom while they remained in bondage."
Jenkins observed that the Israelites (and Christians today) often feel like they've received the short end of the stick when it comes to God's provision and blessing, particularly when they begin comparing their lives with others. The reason, Jenkins said, is that people don't realize God doesn't overlook any of His children. "God never delivers your mail to someone else's house," he quipped. "We've raised up a culture that thinks judgment falls on a people because they live wickedly." But, he explained, "God judges a nation not because of the wickedness of wicked people but because of the wickedness of the so-called righteous."
What Christians tend to focus on, he explained, referencing verse five of the scripture passage, are "footman issues," minor issues that come ahead of something big. "What the Jews were facing was light compared to what was coming down the pike, and what you're facing today is nothing compared to what is coming," he said.
If you're facing those problems, Jenkins said, be thankful because it means God is preparing you for something greater. "Celebrate the fact that you've got footman problems, because footman means you're heading in the right direction," he said. "Your present trials prepare you for what's coming."
"The greater your trial, the greater your blessing," he added. "Get your heart ready for God to take you to a place you are not qualified for. Stop complaining and crying; He is getting you ready for your next level."
The relationship Jenkins and his church have with Regent comes from the Project Bridges initiative. Through Project Bridges, Regent provides customized training seminars and tuition discounts to active members of participating churches. This initiative currently serves a network of churches and faith-based community organizations in the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area.
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