Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Confession from a Psalm 62 Kinda Guy
Because I'm a Psalm 62 kinda guy, I've survived.
Yet, I gotta confess that I was surprised by appreciation from the deepest recesses of my soul for an unexpected token of affection on May 24, 2015.
I'll get to it later; but, now, some random thoughts on being a Psalm 62 kinda guy.
Anybody who gets into the church business to be liked, and there are lots of 'em still in churches while most of 'em have been run out, has no clue about undershepherding ministry in a Matthew 10, John 10, and Ephesians 6 kinda way.
Really, it's impossible to be liked when you've gotta love enough not to be liked by salt-shaking, light-reflecting, and praying/trying to be the good leaven that mixes in to make better.
It's like the old priest said to the young priest in The Diary of a Country Priest, "Salt stings on an open wound; but saves you from gangrene."
Most professional churchworkers aren't willing to put their perks, pensions, and other temporal treasures at risk for that kinda fidelity.
So they become, as Dylan sang, "errand" girls and boys for the "wandering desires" of people who need the real Jesus of the red letters a lot more than the bastardized version being sold on TV and hawked by most American churches.
Sooooooo if you're really, really, really Berufed into it, you're not gonna be able to survive by pleasing people; cause you're gonna be damned if you do and damned if you don't and fidelity compels not giving a damn about it because He called ya into it to connect others while connecting yourself to Him by the book.
The only way to survive is looking to Him and Him alone for the emotional, intellectual, spiritual, and maybe even physical stamina to hang in among people who are hung up on religions only coincidental to Jesus by the book.
And, yeah, Matthew 7:24ff. comes to mind.
I don't do Facebook.
Yeah, I know there are lots of good uses for Facebook; like staying connected with family around the globe, reaching bunches of people with information with the push of a computer key, and telling people why ya really like Charmin and how there's a cloud formation over Capron that looks just like...
I've heard - O.K., peeked on occasion - to see how peers use it.
Charles Barkley's verdict comes to mind: "It's for losers who need it to feel good about themselves."
"You go, girl!"
"I agree with you!"
"Your place or mine?"
I've heard some folks collect about 10K friends.
Of course, the downside is when someone unfriends ya.
I know how that feels; like when someone leaves the church for Pastor Billy Bob or...asks me to delete their address from the list of folks receiving KDs cause they're incapable of sparing the ridicule by just using the delete command like I've done for years for those ED spams.
BTW, as one who has counseled many married couples for four decades or so, I have a hard time figuring out why there's even a need for those ads.
Be that as it is or is not, I don't need Facebook to feel good about myself...or loved...or...
I wonder what the Facebookers do when their net's down.
I'll get to that later in the summer or early fall with "Facebook, Frogs, and Faith."
Shopping for a cross at a big mall over 35 years ago in Edison, New Jersey, I asked the salesman if he'd let me see the store's stock.
He asked, "Do you want one with or without the little man on it?"
That's a metaphor for undershepherds who've used their delete key for Matthew 10, John 10, and Ephesians 6.
Must Jesus bear the cross alone and all the world often clergy go free?
Anyway, I've been wearing a few around my neck for the longest time to remind me of my Beruf.
They also help on Fright Night.
If you didn't see the movie...
Moretheless, I've got one of those nail crosses made by a colleague who went home to Jesus a long time ago.
When I was ordained, I got a beautiful porcelain-inlayed cross with our denominational seal on it; and, over time, the porcelain has chipped away like, uh, me and, uh, the franchise.
A few years ago, I added a Lion of Judah ring for two reasons: (1) I don't like to wear rings on my fingers; and (2) C.S. Lewis not to mention Bible fans will remember it's not only our responsibility to care for the wounded but also, as lionized undershepherds to the Lion of Judah Good Shepherd, to pray and labor to protect people from being wounded.
Well, getting back to May 24, our 2015 Confirmation Class gave a beautiful cross to me at the end of the second service on Sunday because, I guess, well, uh, you know, uh,...
Though I'm starting to look like Mr. T, I added it to my necklace...less than an hour after the service.
They also made a nice poster for me.
It's in my study.
Confessionally, even though I'm a Psalm 62 kinda guy, I like it...because I love them...and, uh, I like that they, uh, uh, uh,...
PAM isn't big in these parts of the Midwest...or East...or West...or Northeast...but, I hear,,,maybe still in the Bible Belt.
When I left the high steeples, I no longer had a shot at a DD because high steeples buy 'em for their errand girls/boys because it makes 'em feel good about themselves in a mutual, uh, uh, uh, kinda way.
I will wear my crosses with the ring and with the latest addition from this year's CC until I die.
Yeah, I'm still a Psalm 62 kinda guy; but, confessionally, it feels pretty good to know...
I also got a note from an elder that caused me to consider, uh, sigh, uh, maybe there are folks who really know why I'll never stop unless/until assassinated by an Islamofascistnutball, denominational jingoist, or local religionist who ran away after being exposed: "Thank you for helping the young people come to a closer relationship with Jesus."
I'm humbled not flattered.
It's a Matthew 10, John 10, and Ephesians 6 thing...with Psalm 62 as the Matthew 7:24ff. ultimate survival kit.
Blessings and Love!