|Blessed and in a funk.|
I've been reminded of what Rob Bell (for more on him, go here) said at a conference I attended last October. He talked about how you can have 99 positive things said about you and 1 critical comment and it's the critical comment that you remember.
The church I serve has grown in the 7 months I've been there.
I have been very encouraged by the poeple at the church I serve.
I have been supported by my DS on the district level.
Other pastors in the area have been supportive and encouraging and recognze gifts for ministry in me.
So why is it that I can't shake some of the comments made by a group of people that don't know me yet have power over me because they represent the religous institution in which I'm a part of?
Rob Bell said it's not so much that one critical comment that gets him. It's the head games that that one critical comments creates internally.
It's easy to start wondering if I should believe that critical comment. And if it's something true, then what does that mean?
The head games go something like this: If I resent the person that said the critical comment and have trouble forgiving that person, is that a sign of immature faith? If so, should I even be a pastor? If I can't forgive how can I teach forgiveness.
Then there's the issue of what other people think about me. If I couldn't even pass the Board of Ordained ministry, obviously others think I'm a failure. If others think I'm a failure, will they follow my leadership?
These head games lead to all sorts of places.
However, the head games can also lead to dark places. And it's important to guard against the evil one who would use that one critical comment to bring me bitterness, fear, anxiety and depression.
I know this funk will not last. And I know my God will get me through it. I know I must persevere and press on and realize that this set back is temporary.
One thing this situation has done is given me a refreshing view of my family. My wife doesn't love me any less because I didn't pass. My daughters don't care at their age. They wouldn't have cared if I passed (even though we would've celebrated, which they would've enjoyed). They don't care about the size of the church I serve. All they care about is spending time with me and giving and receiving love.
I am blessed.