Both the Old and New Testaments repeatedly employ the metaphor of shepherding to describe the spiritual leadership of God’s people. As shepherds, the elders’ mission is to lead, teach, protect and love their church family, just as a shepherd would care for the sheep in a flock. For the last twenty-six plus years, God has blessed Lake Valley with great elders. This summer we are experiencing a major transition in lay elder leadership and one staff elder. We think it is very important to recognize and celebrate what God has done among us through the leadership of our church.

We as a church should celebrate the fact that God has blessed us with men who have been trustworthy, united, purpose driven, humble, and bold. We should be grateful for their sacrifice, responsibility, and spiritual oversight. God gets all the honor, glory and praise for helping us do what He has called us to do. Thanks be to God.

We see in 1 Peter 5:2, “Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve, not lording over those entrusted to you but be an example to them.”

Elders have a measure of authority over the local church, which is why the New Testament also calls them overseers. The elders’ authority is not absolute or unquestionable, nor should it be exercised in a domineering manner. Yet, God calls His shepherds to provide leadership for the flock and, in general, God expects the church to submit to that leadership. There are a plethora of examples of how this has not gone well in the history of the Church. The damage this can cause to the Kingdom is hard to comprehend. However, the other side of that coin is that when those in authority are united and leading from the power of the Holy Spirit, the impact in the Kingdom is equally exponential.

Thanks for walking through this process with us as a church family. May God continue to bless us with strength and courage to lead, live, and love for our King and His Kingdom.