‘You’re here to be light’



Light for the Way devotional series

We invite you to take a peek inside our weekly Light for the Way devotional series provided for staff.

By Optage Hospice Chaplain Steve Pannkuk

“Let your light shine before others ….” —Matthew 5:16, NIV

“You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world.” —Matthew 5:16, The Message

In the midst of the global pandemic, with 22 years of experience as pastor, I had to make a radical change. I was failing at establishing new churches; the pandemic certainly didn’t help. My love and passion to help people live their best lives was now even stronger. Yet, I was left feeling depressed and low. It’s really hard to have faith and trust, when experiencing failure. At the same time, that vulnerability really helped me pray: How might my gifts and experience be used for you, O Lord? What do you really want me to do now? How might I be of deeper service?

In April, I joined you at Presbyterian Homes & Services as you help older adults live their best lives. And in Optage Hospice, where I serve as a chaplain, we help people “live fully and die well.” I am grateful for your teamwork and compassion, your many gifts shared with all our clients, their families, and with each other. I sense that your prayers were a light that guided me here.

Let me share one of the prayers that has been a light for the way for me throughout the years. It was written by Charles Whiston, a former seminary professor of mine.

O Lord Christ, in obedience to your claim on me, I surrender myself to you anew today, all that I am, all that I have, to be wholly and unconditionally yours for your using of me. Take me away from myself and my preoccupation with myself. Use me up as you will, when you will, where you will, with whom you will. Amen.

Praying with you and looking forward to seeing your God-colors!

Steve PannkukChaplain Steve Pannkuk is blessed to have joined Presbyterian Homes & Services and Optage Hospice as a chaplain in April. He recently completed his chaplain residency at United Hospital and has been a pastor since 1998. He’s served churches of all sizes (Lutheran, Presbyterian and most recently Methodist/UCC). He is married to Alicia and together have three active boys, Zach, Sam and Josh — two in college and one in high school. Life’s better with walks and runs with their two rescued German Shepherds, Wally and Charlie.

The Light for the Way series provides staff with an examination of a biblical reading to deepen our focus on scripture. Thank you for engaging with this series as we seek wisdom through prayer and reflection as a Christian Ministry.

Find more in the Light for the Way series:

Where detours lead
Get to know us: a Christian ministry
Introducing Light for the Way, a new devotional series



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