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Archive for November, 2009

Well There You Go

I am now a free agent. Well, actually, that’s been true about 10 days now. It was not my choice. It was not my preference. My hand was forced. That’s a blurry way of saying the I was fired by the Personnel Committee.

They say it was because my “gifts for ministry do not match the gifts desired in an associate minister.” You might say I was fired for preaching and giving pastoral care too well for a 2nd chair player. Someone said that I out-shined the senior ministers I’ve worked with.

I was not allowed to say thanks or good-bye and so it appears I have abandoned the church. I would love to make it clear that I did not do the abandoning. There have been many calls and cards this week from supporters who don’t understand what happened, and some who do. This church has done it before. And while I don’t know all the details, I hear I am number 7. A dubious distinction.

I have been around churches my entire life and have seen this kind of thing before. And in this case, when people get particularly anxious and have been in an interim pattern for longer than they wanted to be, they start doing wild things. And when they’d been set on a path by a certain individual’s seed planting, the anxiety waters the seed and it takes root like kudzu, growing rapidly and out of control. Reason goes out the window, forethought is no consideration and people get hurt.

I will be fine. God is taking care of me and has great things in store. But I grieve for those who don’t understand, who think I’ve abandoned them and who want to know the truth but aren’t going to hear it.

Sometimes the people in charge do not hear or recognize the call that is in front of them. Sometimes, we have to cling to our own call and know, with clear and certain sense, that God does indeed have a call on our lives and that when we heed the call, doing what God has prepared for us to do, the path is straight and clear, even if we can’t quite see it for the distractions.

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