… with Pastor Michael Watson
Question: How has being a church pastor changed your personal and family life?
Answer: I taught for nine years and it has been an adjustment but the transition was a coming home.
I do miss Girls’ High School but I now have the greatest job in the world. The toughest part is scheduling time with my kids, when I used to have afternoons to spend with them.
Q: What would people find most surprising about your calling?
A:There are two things that might be considered surprising.
Firstly, it did not happen in a church building, it happened on a farm somewhere in the Eastern Free State, and secondly, it took 17 years to happen.
Q: What are the most important issues facing Christians today and how are you preparing your congregation to handle these?
A: I believe that authenticity is one of the most important issues facing believers.
Society is tired of looking at church-going Christians and seeing two different people – being one thing on Sunday and another the rest of the week.
For too long, people have had the perception that to be a Christian you have to be perfect, have all your ducks-in-a-row, not smoke, drink, swear at all.
The reality is that we aren’t perfect and that is why Jesus came …
John 1:17, “tells us that the law came through Moses but grace and truth through Jesus”.
I am teaching all the people in our congregation that Queenstown Baptist is a place of grace, come as you are. It is not our place to judge.
But the flip side is that we are going to preach, teach, apply, and live the truth as the Bible teaches us and that will make us uncomfortable, as we seek to become more like Christ.
Q: What has the Lord been teaching you lately in your Bible reading?
A: I am studying the Book of Philippians at the moment in my personal devotion time. It is a book of incredible hope and joy.
Philippians 1:9 has really stood out to me.
I am questioning how God can help me to abound more in love, with insight and knowledge.
Q: If you could talk to one of the people in the Bible (other than Jesus) who would it be?
A: Peter, I really feel that we could have hung out. He was a practical sort of guy who didn’t get it right all the time.
Q: Which news story do you think has been the biggest so far this year?
A: Without a doubt the #feesmustfall movement. I have been in conversation with a number of students at various universities. The movement of costs falling is a valid one but I completely disagree with the vandalism of property, as this is counter-productive.
The point has been made, let the people write their final exams to qualify. The longer lasting effect of, for example, this year’s matrics having a late intake as was discussed by one university, or the medical students not being placed in community service positions has dramatic repercussions on the health sector and the poor.
As a believer, I struggle to find any justification for violent protest action and as such would caution students that we will be accountable for our actions.
Q: What song would you play on a global radio station to make everyone happy?
A: Happy by Pharrel Williams.
Q: What do you think is the best man-made creation on earth?
A: Coffee and ice-cream. No, I think the smart phone with all its capabilities for the internet, e-mailing etc. I believe ministry is easier because of it. One can download sermon podcasts, worship music, subscribe to devotionals and read your Bible.
Q: Do you think we are living in the best or worst time?
A: While being in Komani I have seen both the worst and best of times. Currently there is unity among the denominations in this town in a way there hasn’t been before. There is an openness when it comes to being able to share and pray for people and people are starting to go back to church.
… with Pastor Michael Watson