Back by popular demand, here is another installment of, “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up!”
Are you ready for this? A good friend of mine wrote on his blog about the very same struggle I was having this week — the age old battle between the Tsunami of good things God is doing on the one hand and the drip, drip, drip of the leaky faucet, eye-rolling cry babies on the other. And what is the ratio? — in our case about 3,000 to 1.
The last 2 weeks have both seen record numbers, countless people’s lives changed and hundreds of unchurched showing up at SCC as well as generosity like no other time in the history of SCC. In addition to this the encouragement from e-mails and phone calls — personal , face to face encouragements and letters sent in praising what God is doing at SCC and confirming the fact that we are right on track have been overwhelming! Thanks for the love Brookies!
Which brings me to an immature problem that I have and my Friend struggles with it at times as well. You see, we can get 100 ‘pump me up, back slapping, high-fiving encouragements,’ and yet… ONE STINKING Syskel and Ebert type can throw a wrench in the works–and guess what we end up dwelling on? You guessed right (maybe you have the same tendency). We chew on, dwell on, ruminate on, meditate on, obsess on the ONE SHLEPROCK IN THE GROUP!
Why is that? For my pastor friend it was some blogger who decided to trash him. For me, after reading the mountain of positive comments from every possible venue (e-mail, letters, comment cards, phone calls, etc.) there was one (how many? That’s right, ONE) negative comment so far out to lunch it was as though they were dining in Siberia. The comment (from a comment card) was actually the polar opposite of almost every other positive thing said over the last two weeks (which should have been my first clue that I was dealing with a wolf) and so pointed as to be more of a personal attack than anything said based on reality. And, to top it off, they used the favorite nickname of religious, armchair critics everywhere — ‘Anonymous.’ Don’t you love that? It’s like saying, I have some truth I feel God is telling me to share with EVERYONE but I’d rather not use my name because, well, my reputation would immediately invalidate everything I said.
And there you have it. But what do we have? We have people who could possibly be used to derail a pastor, church, leadership, etc. from the mission God called them too by wasting valuable time trying to placate an insatiable troublemaker. Wow! Now THAT’s a good use of my time.
Obviously, it’s not. And here’s the moment of truth. The subject of “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up!” part four is (I’m embarrassed to admit) ME. When people rail against me after I have given a message that was biblically sound and prepared with the help of the Holy Spirit, and used by God to do miraculous works in people’s lives; they are really railing against God. If I think any different, it means that I am reacting pridefully, childishly. Ouch.
I guess we all have times in our lives when we don’t wanna grow up.
Good News? Lesson learned. And I’ll try to write about issues without being so scathing and too sarcastic. How long do you think I’ll make it? Go easy on me. It’s not like exposing Pharisees and religious hypocrites is fun or anything… <– Uh Oh, was that sarcastic?
I’ll do better next time.
Love you Brookies and MP’s!
Love you Southbrook Family!