Pastoral Relief and Retreat

My photo
Wethersfield, CT, United States
I am Pastor at Poquonock Community Church, Congregational (CCCC) in Windsor, CT. My wife Jama and I live in Wetherfield, CT. We'd like to invite you to Terre Haute -- High Ground -- That's what Jama and I call the retreat space on our property. We offer free intentional get-away retreats. We'll feed you and house you and give you space to be with the Lord. All are welcome; no questions asked. This blog is my daily devotional journal. I write it because it is so easy to go for weeks without ever taking the time to be alone with God. Writing helps me develop a discipline I need.

Pages

Monday, February 25, 2008

James 1:23

"For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror."

This is a hard verse for me. I don't like being told what to do. I guess no one does, really. But in my case it is kind of extreme. Even when no one is actually telling me. I started tearing wallpaper off the bathroom off our den about 3 weeks ago. Jama wanted me to do it, that's true. But I consented gladly enough. The problem came in when I realized this wasn't going to be an easy job. I want all jobs to be easy. I don't want to have to work for things. My new ministry is one where I have to raise the money myself in order to be employed. A lot of church positions work like this. It is called "missionary" staffing. The only problem is I don't want to have to do the work to get the word out. I'd much rather have the money just come to me. I don't want to work in relationships. If the person is just there, great. That's why I'm virtually addicted to Instant Messenger. I don't want to have to go GET the person. And on and on it goes.

I love the Word of God. I love reading it. I love listening to it. I love preaching it (as long as I don't have to put any work in to preparing for preaching). I love memorizing it (as long as I get it memorized by osmosis and not by actually working for it). But if you tell me I have to do the Word I'll rebel every time. That sounds too much like work.

Just to prove a point, I'm sitting here in this diner I frequent. About 10 minutes ago someone I said something unkind to about six months ago walked in and sat down across the room from me. They were cordial enough and smiled at me and said hello. But I know I still need to apologize. That, of course, would mean killing my pride (for the moment -- pride is like the Phoenix of old). It also means throwing my reputation off a cliff. I'll have to admit that I blew it in that last conversation.

And here I sit looking into the mirror of God's Word. Yep.

"Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you." -- Ephesians 4:32

"“So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets." -- Matthew 7:12

Shut UP, God! The wallpaper can fall off the damned crapper before I'll open my mouth and embarrass myself like this! Besides, it is too much like work. Relationships should be easy and clean. I think I'll just step away from this mirror. The light is bothering my eyes.

Jon

PS... I think I'll leave you wondering what I actually did. That's between me and God.

1 comment:

Cricky said...

I was actually wondering WHO it was...but, that's also my creepy flesh wanting gossip.

But, that info is also between you and God!

;)