A Message from President Tim Yeadon

Hey, What Do You Want from Me?

How many times have you heard that statement made from an angry family member or friend or co-worker who in frustration snaps at you? Perhaps you have been exasperated by a demanding co-worker yourself or family member and you finally break and lash out with your own, "For crying out loud, what do you want from me?”

I’m asking that question in a more positive way of my co-workers and fellow saints in the Kingdom of Jesus here in New England. Actually, let me tell you what prompted me to ask that question at all.

In my first two years of presidency (oh my, has it been two years already????) I have basically been learning what it means to be a District President. As it was with parish ministry some unique aspects of life and work demands come with the "Big Chair” in Springfield, Massachusetts. Almost every experience is a new one with new challenges, new learning curves, and new demands. But now I find myself with some breathing room – and room to ask a few pertinent questions.

What do people, Pastors and Church Workers and Parishioners and Congregations really want from me? Perhaps more to the point it should be phrased, "What do they NEED from me?” I was having this discussion with our recently called Deaconess of Human Care, Deaconess Tiffany Manor, who herself has been on a new learning curve at her new call here in the District. The reality is that so often we think we truly know what people need from us. In our hearts we have sometimes drawn conclusions, often ahead of time, what we ourselves perceive is the need or the desire.

Sometimes that can work, especially when you have asked Jesus to put on your heart what He wants your heart to desire. Two years ago, and even before my election to the Presidency, I and others in the District developed a growing belief that Church Workers needed care and support above and beyond what had been given in the past. The eventual result was the call we extended to Deaconess Manor to care for Church Workers and their families, with emphases on Pastors’ Wives and Church Worker Families. I believe in my heart that this conclusion of what the District needed was dead-on accurate. The overwhelming acceptance of Deaconess Manor’s ministry by our sisters in Christ in the District has confirmed our conclusions.

But what do our Congregations, Schools, Pastors and other Church Workers really need? We sometimes think we know just because the answers appear obvious. To be truly honest, often the easy answer is : "More Money.” Finances admittedly are a reality that is hitting almost all of our congregations and ministries. But to say that what Pastors, for example, really need the most is more money—or to say that what congregations need above all are greater financial resources may have a ring of truth to it; but in the end it may not be "what they need the most” at all!

I believe, for example, that encouragement and a strengthening of the spirit for these days in which we live is a great need – and that is something I pray the Lord can use me to give to all of you whom He so loves! But that may not even be the greatest need. So what is it? "Hey – what do you want from me?” is a question I hope I am always ready to ask – and ready to listen when the answers are honestly given to me.

I am honestly saying that right now I may have an inkling or an idea of what you need and want—I hope and pray I have been listening to your voices and the voice of our Savior. But I am willing to listen – and the one thing I can confidently say is that I want to be there for you as District President, as an advocate when needed, as a sounding board when needed, as a resource when needed, as an admonisher when needed (but sometimes not wanted !!!) and as a voice for the Lord when needed. (Actually I pray that I am a voice for the Lord whether you need it or not !!!)

By the way, I also have desires of the heart and needs too – and I am fervently grateful to all of you who have so often listened to me and given me back from Jesus far more than I ever deserved.

So Hey--- what do you want from me?

Call me up sometime (413-783-0131 ext. 11) and let me know, OK? I want to listen and I want to answer and may the Lord help me in both!

Pres. Yeadon