Since I’m a pastor, I find myself having more than your average number of conversations (though I have no idea who keeps these stats) on subjects of temptation and desire, shame and hope. These terrains of the soul are universal, common to all; but it’s remarkable how agonizingly difficult it can be to own these spaces.
These conversations, not to mention my own story, has led me to a simple conclusion: The Church should not teach people to lie. Unfortunately, though, too often we do. I say more about this on a piece for the good folks at A Deeper Church.
5 Replies to “Tell Me the Truth”
Oh, Winn. I am not THE clergyperson, but married to him. And I myself find this one of the most alienating things about church. If I had to do all the hours that you ordained ones do, listening to the sanitized stuff as people carefully put it before you, but all the while you sense and intuit the back story, the subtext…. I’d probably make some egregious mistake, like, SPEAK MY MIND to these folks!
Sigh… Very much the human tension forever. The already and the not yet. A paradox that will not be resolved in this life. And do you wonder if this cloak and dagger drama grieves God’s heart?
Catie, all I can say is that we have got to get you a stole, an ordination certificate and an office where this speaking of your mind can happen. You might not be able to stand it, but there’s some folks who would sure benefit from it.
LOL, Winn~ in all the ways that I know and see ordained ministry, I would not be a fit! (As I ranted on before, I have watched up close for a few decades…) Isn’t Telling the Truth the tightrope of our lives? I find it a creative tension indeed. Not to ‘play the game’ of doing our jobs, and keeping folks around us happy, but participating from the depth of myself in what God’s Spirit shows me to do. And say. Sigh… It never really gets easy. I wish we could get F. Buechner in on THIS forum!
Thank you for the words of truth. I’m on a journey to finding out what I want. Your words are an encouragement to keep peeling back the layers.
Merri, that’s a journey indeed. I sail little sections of it everyday, I think. May love peel those layers…