One of those things they never told me in seminary

11 Oct

In my theological education, I’ve attended two fine institutions: The New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and Erskine Theological Seminary.  I will always appreciate those institutions, their faculties, and the students with which I attended.  They prepared me for many of the challenges I would face in ministry.  But there are a few things for which they didn’t prepare me … I chalk these up to the “human element” of church membership.  But there is ONE thing I wish they’d been able to better communicate:  The principle of “The Excuse.”

The principle of “The Excuse” is there are some people in this world, no matter what happens in their lives, that will blame their minister / pastor for their own problems.  That will openly state they are sitting back and waiting for him to fall, fail, or to just leave.  These are the folks that sit back and say “How dare he stand in the pulpit every Sunday and preach when he is so ________________  (you can fill in the blank with your favorite complaint or shortcoming)”.

I wish this principle didn’t get under my skin … but it does.  Maybe it is pride, or maybe just the middle child coming out in me, but I want everyone to be at peace.  And I know I make mistakes.  And I know I am imperfect.  And my family is imperfect.

I guess I never really understood the lengths that some people will go to excuse away their relationship with God and His church.  And now, many years later, I am amazed.  And greatly saddened.

2 Responses to “One of those things they never told me in seminary”

  1. Amy D October 11, 2010 at 12:46 pm #

    What better person to have in the pulpit than one who has faults, short comings and sin. Just like the rest of us! We are thankful and fortunite to have a pastor that preaches “us” and not “you”. Jesus forgives all our sins,each and every one. You can’t sin for me nor can I for you. Keep fighting the good fight. We are praying for you!

  2. Pamela Turner October 11, 2010 at 4:16 pm #

    It seems that some people always have to blame someone else for the mistakes they make. It couldn’t possible be their fault. It’s usually the pastor or the teacher who gets the blame.

    We think you are exceptional!!! 🙂 Loved the sermon Sunday.

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