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Realizing the presence, promise, and power of the Kingdom of God.
Pastor to Pastor

Stretching Souls

To fill them with Jesus.

Pastoral Vision (16)

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3.20

Our focus in this series is to consider the vision for ministry that moved and directed great shepherds from past generations as they worked to fulfill their calling. When our vision is the Lord’s, and as we aim to realize that vision in all our endeavors, the grace of God spreads out in us, and the Spirit stretches out to extend us beyond anything we’ve ever known.

Clement of Alexandria (ca. 150-215) urged us toward such a vision: “We, then, who are infants, no longer roll on the ground, nor creep on the earth like serpents as before, crawling with the whole body about senseless lusts; but, stretching upwards in soul, loosed from the world and our sins, touching the earth on tiptoe so as to appear to be in the world, we pursue holy wisdom, although this seems folly to those whose wits are whetted for wickedness” (The Instructor).

I love that image of “stretching upwards in soul”, “touching the earth on tiptoe”. Here is the way to fight spiritual complacency, by casting vision and appealing to the hearts, minds, and consciences of those we serve, that they should rest in the inward power of the Lord to become more in Christ than they have ever dared to ask or think. And do this every day beginning with ourselves.

The challenge to shepherds is, first, to embody such a vision of the life of faith, and of our callings in the Lord, and then to teach it consistently, and without apology.

Resources for Shepherds
Men, we invite you to join men from around the country to seek the Lord for revival every Tuesday morning at 10:00 Eastern via Zoom. Using a psalm to guide us and joining our voices together after each prayer, we have been seeking revival for nearly 20 years now. We invite you to join us for 30 minutes of heartfelt, encouraging, and visionary prayer. Write to me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and I’ll make sure you receive the link.

As shepherds we know that our calling is to make disciples. But do we also realize that this is the calling of all the Lord’s disciples as well? Our self-study course, Disciples Making Disciples, can help give you a vision for a discipled and discipling ministry, where all believers are stretching out in the Lord to spread His grace to the world. Watch this brief video, then click to register and download the free course materials. And if you’d like to have a Brother in our Fellowship read and comment on your work, simply note that on the registration form.

Our newest bookstore release, Patrick: A Devotional History, is now available for your e-reader as a free download in our bookstore.This 30-day devotional would be a stimulating and instructive exercise for church leaders in every area. Once you’ve downloaded your copy, share it with anyone you like.

Men, beginning in September, Ailbe Brother Dennis Gagnon and I will be teaching a course on Celtic Christianity using Thomas Cahill’s How the Irish Saved Civilization and some resources from the period. You can register early for this course—which will meet every other Wednesday at 4:00 Eastern via Zoom—by sending me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

From the Celtic Revival
It is good to be reminded of Jesus’ promise to be with us always. With us. Always. That means we can tap into His power, walk in His joy, and delight in the pleasure of His Presence whatever we’re doing. Celtic Christians expressed their gladness in Jesus’ Presence with them in the form of “breastplate” poems. Here’s an excerpt from one of those poems:

O God, defend me everywhere
With Your impregnable power and protection.
Deliver all my mortal limbs,
Guarding each with Your protective shield,
So the foul demons shall not hurl their darts
Into my side, as is their wont.

  - “The Breastplate of Laidcenn”, Irish, 8th-9th century[1]

In a recent issue of our Men at Prayer teaching letter, David Timbie suggested some ways we can use our everyday surroundings to seek the Lord in prayer and thus know His Presence with us always.

Subscribe to Crosfigell and Men at Prayer, and all our other teaching letters by clicking here

We have prepared several free resources to give you a look into the period of the Celtic Revival (ca. 430-800 AD) and to challenge your faith and ministry with the example of our Christian forebears. Click the links below to check out the following:

The Celtic Revival: A Brief Introduction
Living to Rule: An Introduction to Celtic Christian Spirituality
Lives of Irish Saints: A Tribute
Columbanus: A Devotional History
Colum Cille: A Devotional History
Patrick: A Devotional History

T. M. Moore

Support for Pastor to Pastor comes from our faithful and generous God, who moves our readers to share financially in our work. If this article was helpful, please give Him thanks and praise.

And please prayerfully consider supporting The Fellowship of Ailbe with your prayers and gifts. You can contribute online, via PayPal or Anedot, or by sending a gift to The Fellowship of Ailbe, 103 Reynolds Lane, West Grove, PA 19390.

Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


[1] Davies, p. 290.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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