Saturday, October 18, 2008

I'm Sorry

Recently I guest lectured at a men’s nondenominational Bible study and the passage I was asked to deal with contained three doctrinal hand grenades. Each was potentially incendiary depending on one’s particular faith tradition. I thought I had managed to negotiate the mine fields rather successfully speaking truthfully about the various views and stating them accurately and then giving just a short explanation about why I felt that one view was most likely correct.

I was dealing with the last issue regarding Jesus and the possibility of siblings. I came to the end of the issue and stated that being a man I could not believe that Joseph would live his life married to Mary and continue to be celibate. I mentioned that while I had accepted the invitation to speak that my wife had come in to visit me and that I was anxious for the meeting to end because I was looking forward to spending the rest of the evening with her.

I heard a week later from the facilitator of the group that the following week about 10% of the men were offended that I had told them that I was anxious to get back to my wife so I could “be with” her (as an aside, I wonder who they think I should “be with” if not my wife)

The entire lecture was negated in the mind of these men because of a comment attempting to explain that the natural course of a marital relationship included something that God had hard wired into every man’s DNA including Joseph.

I asked the facilitator if he had suggested to the men if they should speak to me about the situation which would be the correct way of handling the “offense” but to date none of the men have seen fit to do so.

So I have decided to blog my apology for the world to know.

I’m sorry for offending you and hope that you will forgive me! My intention was righteous if perhaps inappropriate.

Wow that felt good

Maybe I should get some more things I sorry for off my chest, too.

I’m sorry that I had to follow Matthew 5’s teaching to go to the men I offended so that I could worship on Sunday.

I’m sorry that these men have yet to be obedient to Matthew 18 in coming to me to discuss the situation.

I’m sorry that my house has not yet sold and I only get to see my wife every few weeks.

I’m sorry that in an attempt at being authentic you were uncomfortable

I’m sorry that I can’t live as a celibate!

I’m sorry that in an attempt to be transparent it was discovered that the pastor “has no clothes!”

I’m sorry that because of my brokenness Jesus had to pay the penalty for my sin!

I’m sorry that I have not yet come to the level of maturity that I should be at after being on the journey of spiritual maturity for almost 50 years.

I’m sorry for being a sorry person!

But I’m thankful for a Savior who loved me enough to die in my place

I’m thankful for a relationship with a loving and caring God

I’m thankful for a God who gives second chances.

I’m thankful for the opportunity to grow and continue to mature.

I’m thankful that God didn’t wait until I sought Him but came after me when I was broken

I’m thankful for a congregation who puts up with a less then perfect pastor

I’m thankful for YOU reader, for taking the time to read this blog.

So, what are you thankful for?

Drop me a note. I’d love to hear some of the things you are thankful for, too.

A sorry excuse for a pastor (just ask my critics)

Pastor Val


Kevin A. Stephison said...

Welcome to the rapids Val. It is sad when one realizes that our biggest critics are the ones we would hope would be lifting us up. Instead, it is too often the opposite. Honesty, open handed living, and accepting people for where they are has been lost in some corners of Christiandom. I know I too, have fallen prey to this arrogance at times, and it is my heart-felt prayer that God keeps my eyes open and on what matters. Ride the rapids my friend; after all, these are the times that make us stronger and firmer in our beliefs and understanding. Dominus Illuminatio Mea

Kevin, your fellow mariner

Anonymous said...

Perhaps, Pastor Val, the best respnse would have been no response at all.