So, You Have Been Nominated to Be an Elder…

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Some of you may have just been nominated to be an elder. Others remember their own recent nomination. And all of us remember the very early stages of being an elder. Even experienced elders will not always feel comfortable with the office and even fewer would think of themselves as 'veterans'...

Are there some steps you could take to deal with your discomfort?

Yes, there are.

Pray about it. Ah, but you will have already done that. But believers have known throughout history that difficult matters of the heart need to be laid before the face of their heavenly Father repeatedly. You may do that too. Tell the Lord of your doubts and fears. If doubts and fear remain, pray again.

Talk with an older elder with whom you feel comfortable as a person. Ask him/her whether you may talk confidentially about this weighty matter. Lay out in detail what bothers you most about the prospect of being an elder. You will find that your struggles and doubts have probably been harbored much more widely than you thought. Let that elder assure you that no one nominated to this office was assured to have had all the necessary skills or the right personality.

Make an honest assessment of your gifts and knowledge. Perhaps you under-estimate your gifts and qualities. The present council-members who nominated you did not do that lightly. Together they knew quite a bit about you. Trust their judgment.

And, finally, and probably the most important thing you need to do, is trust that, when you accept — even with trepidation — the Lord will provide. He will not expect of you what He will not also provide.

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