My time is short. That’s how it is as you get older, you recognize how fast time goes by and some of it has been wasted pursuing matters that just take up time with little profit in life. I have some regrets (not many) how I have lived, but NO regrets when it comes to being involved with serving Jesus Christ. As for me there has is no greater fulfillment than to serve Jesus and see how it impacts the lives of others. Whether it has been my own children or my church family, there is no greater joys than to see them walk, talk, and follow Jesus. I pray that this will continue on with their children as well. I pray this will be your passion as well.
A wise pastor told me once that God requires me to be faithful to my calling. I am a called to be a husband, father, and pastor. Sometimes that faithfulness requires more time with my family than it does as being a pastor. Sometimes my faithful service requires sacrificial time for the flock I have been entrusted to. Balance is needed, yes, but faithfulness to His calling in these areas is required.
As you continue the journey in ministry, do not be afraid to be transparent before your folks. They need to see the real Jesus living in you. But beware there will be those who will use your transparency to their advantage. Be wise in what you divulge. Measure your works and contemplate your actions.
Learn your theology well, so it will serve you in those days when life does not make sense. Let your doctrine hammer out your convictions so when the hard days of ministry come, you will not be shaped by experience, but your actions will demonstrate what you believe. Too many have allowed their experiences to mold and change their convictions, and this confuses the flock. Remember the people who you minister to are the bride of Christ. Treat them with the same protection and love you would give to your wife. As if needs be ready to sacrifice your life for the bride of Christ as you would sacrifice all for your earthly bride.
Enjoy the ministry. Recognize the blessing God has allowed you to experience. If you are called to ministry—consider it the most worthy expenditure of your life. If you do not have that clear sense of call to the ministry—graciously serve Jesus in another capacity. The Bride, the flock, the church family, God deserves your best.