Cutting Loose


"I know I'll go crazy if I don't go crazy tonight!" -U2
Being a young minister, I am told to try to be "above reproach". I am constantly encouraged to be patient, and kind, and of impeccable moral character. Essentially, I feel like I'm being asked to do all of the things that everyone else wishes they could do, as if those discipling me want me to be some sort of "Super Worship Pastor" who shoots love lasers out of his eyes and is impervious to all temptation.

While the idea of leaping tall church spires in a single bound is appealing, I am learning more and more that I am not ever going to be "Super Worship Pastor". I am a regular guy, who God is using in amazing ways, and I am eternally grateful for the opportunities I've been given. Most of the time, I try my hardest to be that person I feel like He would want me to be, the one who's mentors look upon him with pride and validation. I want to make my youth ministers, my family, and my old mentors proud and happy, and above all I want to make God happy. Most of the time I live my life with this as my goal... but not always.

See, there are times when I just need to go vent, times when I feel like cussing at the world and its stupidity, or at the old boss who won't send me a copy of my w-2 because she's too lazy to search her boxes for the documents from a store that closed almost a year ago, or at the people who don't seem to get the basic rules of social interaction and not hurting those around them. There are times when I feel like pulling a Noah, getting stinky drunk and forgetting my problems for a bit (Genesis 9:20-21). There are times when I feel like just escaping and wallowing in my own self pity like Elijah (1 Kings 19), or like asking God to send bears to maul stupid people (2 Kings 22-25).

I give these examples to make a point. The point is this...

God uses regular guys, even when they screw up.

Yes, we should try to follow Him, but we can't expect to never fall. This leads me to the question I am trying to answer...

What do I do when I feel like cutting loose?

I know I should be setting an example in my life at all times, and that I should strive to be above reproach and not going on my own power and strength... but should I give in to reality, or try to constantly hold on and keep everything inside? What does it look like for a minister to truly let loose without hurting his ministry?

I've been having "one of those days"
for a few weeks now,
and I think I might go crazy if
I don't go crazy...
soon.

5 comments:

katdish said...

Look at David. He cried out to God in his gladness and in his anger. Be who God wants you to be, not who anyone else expects you to be. I know that's easier said than done, but still. I was at Catalyst One Day in Atlanta awhile back and someone asked Andy Stanley about how he could get the leadership of his church to support some new outreach programs when they were used to being very inwardly focused. Andy's advice to him was this: "Stop worrying about getting fired."

Also, when I get really angry and need to blow off steam, I get in my car, put on an angry diva song, and sing along at the top of my voice. This one is one of my favorites!

markpenrith said...

Hi Richard,

Good post. Left me thinking.

I agree with you, elders, ministers or pastors are not called to be super-powered-gets-everything-perfect-machinelike-masterpieces. 1 John 1:8 makes it clear that we all still face the ravages of sin in our lives. You just have to look at the testimony of the apostle Paul and his interactions with the apostle Peter in Galatians 2:11 to see that.

That said the requirements laid out in Titus 1 and 1 Timothy 3 need to be true of those in leadership. It’s a tough ask but that’s the way it’s been laid down.

Mark

Meagan said...

let me know wen you find out :)

leanna jackson said...

ah, honesty. i think you're in the perfectly right place. if you didn't feel like ripping your hair out every once in a while, i'd probably worry about you. us being a far cry from perfection is what makes god's love so beautiful. it is these moments. these are the moments that have to happen sometimes for you to know where your kids are coming from and to be able to minister to them. these are the moments we are whole because we are broken.

maybe that's a little more than you're facing, but all that to say ... i feel you. and i'm a little there, too.

Richard said...

katdish- I liked those songs!

mark- that is the way it's been laid down... the question remains :-P.

meagan- I will.

leanna- Well, I don't have kids anymore (leading for adults now... mostly :-P). But yeah, it is good to know I'm not the only one. Thanks :).