Pastor Jesse has been a tremendous blessing to me. I could not have asked for a better friend and co-laborer. His temperament and gifting have balanced out my own. God has taught me a lot through him. Let me share a couple of those lessons.
I think it’s impossible to offend Jesse. You can smack him around, call him a baldy, and he’ll just give you a smile in return. He always in a good mood, regardless of how others treat him. He’s unoffendable. This is Jesse’s superpower. We all need more of that, me included.
One of my sins is that I speak first, listen second. Jesse doesn’t do that. Jesse’s approach is to be quick to listen, slow to speak (Jas 1:19). Jesse doesn’t rush in to give you his opinion. He’s very willing to allow others to speak first. Sometimes, he doesn’t even speak at all, which is wise (Prov 10:19). God has shaped me by watching how Jesse talks.
Jesse is patient. He takes things in stride and considers the long-term impact of his decisions. I have not always approached life this way. Rather, I have been given to impulse, which doesn’t work. Jesse is calm, cool, collected, and patient.
Assuming the best is a Christian virtue (1 Cor 13:7). That’s hard to do, but Jesse does it well. He always gives the benefit of the doubt. My critical spirit sometimes leads me in the opposite direction. God has used Jesse to show me the importance of believing the best about others.
The Bible says that good pastors are a gift from God (Jer 23:4; Eph 4:11). Jesse has been that to our congregation—a gift from God. Thank you, Jesse, for your service to us and for your example of Christ to me.