I really can’t stand to read pastors’ blogs, tweets, or facebook posts, when they bitch about being a pastor. Yes, we do have to work every Christmas, but 1) If you didn’t think about that going in, then you’re probably not very good at your job, and 2) At least we get to do what we love. I’m guessing the midnight shift at Waffle House would rather be home, too. And yes, sometimes Easter does fall on Spring Break, but it’s not Jesus’ fault. And yes, I know you wish you could let your hair down, and be “real”, but if being real means still doing upside down keg stands, then you maybe you need to rethink real.
But this week, I’m joining in. It sucks.
I don’t know what to say anymore. Last week, I was in Honduras with a great group of people, doing some hard, but simple work with/for another great group of people. Pouring concrete floors so babies don’t have to crawl around on dirt. Building containers to hold clean water, and places for people to clean themselves with dignity. It was a partnership, and I really want to celebrate that.
But after being away from the news for a week, I found this news story at the airport, of a Stanford swimmer receiving a sentence of 6 months in jail for raping an unconscious woman. Reader, I was wearing SPF 250 while I was in Honduras. I’m not looking from the outside in; quite the contrary. Please don’t tell me white privilege does not exist in this country.
Then, while waiting at the gate in Tegucigalpa, I saw Obama on television. Quick Google search took me to this story. 50 people killed for trying to have a good time on Saturday night.
This week it sucks to be a pastor. To try and explain. To try and offer hope. So many people pointing the finger. Simple blame, and simple solution. It’s Obama’s fault. It’s Trump’s fault. It’s religious extremism. If they would have all been armed, this never would have happened. If no one had guns, this never would have happened. Where is the good news? Where is the hope?
I’m sick of people not taking responsibility for what they do. I’m a good guy; I shouldn’t be held accountable for 20 minutes of action.
And my Lord, MY LORD, am I sick of people not willing to take responsibility for their own hatred, but instead dressing it up in religion, and claiming that they’re doing something for the greater good. No, you’re not!
You know what? I don’t like Arby’s. You know what I do? I don’t GO to Arby’s. You know what I don’t do? I don’t go shoot up an Arby’s! You want your Beef ‘n’ Cheddar? Have at it. Doesn’t bother me.
In high school, I counted on heavy metal bands to interpret Revelation to me. Now, I cling to these words from Revelation 21 like a child to a Teddy Bear.
21 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2 And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,
“See, the home of God is among mortals.
He will dwell with them;
they will be his peoples,
and God himself will be with them;
4 he will wipe every tear from their eyes.
Death will be no more;
mourning and crying and pain will be no more,
for the first things have passed away.”
Jesus may be bringing this about, but I imagine he wouldn’t mind us pitching in a little. It’s not about claiming a victory over your enemy; it’s about realizing you have no enemy. You are a child of God, and as such, you need to recognize that everyone else is, also.
No one should have to walk through this life in fear, in fear of being who they really are, in fear of loving who they really love. And you shouldn’t either.
Damn it! Love wins!
I swear to God, it does. Love will win!