LORD, Help!

2 comments Written on September 22nd, 2015     
Filed under: Testimonies and Stories
druDrusilla (Dru) McLeland is starting her final year of seminary at Northern Theological Seminary, Lombard, IL Campus. This fall, she is doing her internship as a “female pastoral presence” at The Evangelical Covenant Church of Hinsdale with Pastors Paul Allen and Lars Stromberg. She and Paul have been married for twenty-nine years and have one daughter, Kathryn.



One of things I continually strive for is a healthy life balance of being and doing.  In pursuit of this, I am working on adopting seven daily practices:

  1. Make my bed.
  2. Make a short “to do” list.
  3. Spend time reading the Bible, reflecting, journaling and praying.
  4. At least thirty minutes of exercise.
  5. Do something for my home.
  6. Connect with one other person outside my family.
  7. Do something creative.

As I think about this list, I realize it could become a formula for life balance but it might not actually lead to a balanced life.  My “formula” was challenged when I read an article from The Gospel Coalition, “A Call for a More Reflective Christianity.”  (click here)

I think one of our roles as pastors is to create sacred spaces and call people away from the busyness of life to reflect on God.  I have found that it’s easier to provide a formula or a plan of action than to spend time reflecting and being.  Sometimes I feel guilty about spending time in quiet reflection and solitude, but unless I practice this, how can I lead others to do it?

This article encouraged me to continue the practice of reflection.  I took some time to look up Psalm 107 and quickly saw the repeated cry for help and God’s response of rescue: “LORD, help!” they cried in their trouble, and he rescued them from their distress” (NLT, verses 6, 13, 19, 28).  This is followed by the refrain: “Let them praise the LORD for His great love and for the wonderful things He has done for them. (NLT, verses 8, 15, 21, 31).  As I reflect on Psalm 107 I remember times when I have cried out, “LORD, help!” and he has rescued me from my distress.  I confess this has happened many times as I walk this journey of pastoral call.

One of those times was in March of 2014.  It was one week since my job ended and I was walking across the lawn to the library on campus.  Final papers loomed, application deadlines for Clinical Pastoral Education were past and nothing had opened up, and discouragement hung like a Ziggy rain cloud over me.  I cried out “Help, LORD!”  I reminded God that this call to ministry and the ensuing seminary education was NOT my idea so if I was ever going to graduate, He needed to step in and do something!  I walked into the library as was greeted by Roni Okubo, Director of Supervised Ministry.  She listened to my concerns and prayed with me.  I went to work on research.

About ten minutes later, Roni walked out of her office and said with a grin, “So, you need CPE?  How about this summer?”  The CPE supervisor from Adventist Midwest Health has just called her to say she had a couple of openings for the summer for a student who could submit their application in the next two days.  Within forty-eight hours I had an interview set up for the next week.  Two weeks to the hour from the time my job ended, the CPE supervisor was saying to me, “Dru, I want to invite you to join our chaplaincy team for the summer.  I think you’ll be a great addition to our ministry.”  That summer was one of the hardest and the best of my life.  Only God, in his great love, could’ve orchestrated it.  When I can’t believe I’m on this journey I remember this event and once again I praise God for His great love and salvation in my distress.

As you reflect on your ministry journey, is there a story of God’s rescue that you would tell us to remind us of God’s great love and the wonderful things He has done?


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2 comments “LORD, Help!”

Thanks for sharing this part of your journey Dru! I experience God working hard things out on a daily basis now. So thankful to always be able to give testimony to how great, powerful and caring the Lord is! Your post also does that beautifully.

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I would love to read other pastor’s stories. I was reminded again of how powerful it is to tell our stories when I had the opportunity to tell my story at a men’s breakfast yesterday. When I finished they shared their stories with me and we rejoiced in the way God works in our lives. 

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