Friday, August 2, 2013

Confession of a Pastor

When I blog, tweet, or Facebook I am most scared about...
How my Tribe will React

My tribe is made up of people commissioned to love their neighbor. To be know in the world as people marked by an unusually loving unity. But before I post anything, I notice that I metaphorically look around the corner for someone who may throw a stone at me.

And I notice I'm not so concerned about the non-Jesus followers. My mind's eye looks for fellow tribesmen.

When thoughts on homosexuality or the simple act of enjoying a beer come to mind, I think,

"Better be careful. Someone will take issue with this. You may lose some of your influence. You may lose some respect from some Christ followers in town."

To non-Christians, thoughts on those subjects are commonplace. Normal. Rarely volatile. Not so among my tribe.

And please, I understand the need for caution and wisdom in social media. Influence must be stewarded. But the tension I sense is this:

If I shrink back from commenting and connecting with issues and items in the culture, for fear of losing influence with my tribe, I feel a greater risk--the risk of losing influence and connection with those outside the Jesus tribe.

People looking in at the Jesus-life I try to live, have real questions. Valid curiosities.

"Can I still drink beer and go to church without feeling guilty?" Yes, as long as it's not Budweiser. (Sorry, I joke.)
"If I think about checking out your Jesus group, what do I do with my gay friends/family members?"

I am sensing that I am caring less about offending the brethren with risky conversation and commentary about issues that are potentially divisive inside our tribe.

I am sensing that our capital T Tribe risks being easily dismissed and further marginalized the longer we fail to engage in a loving way on topics that normal people find benign or curious.

I am sensing that perhaps pastors need to teach people inside the Tribe to chill the heck out on issues that are minuscule compared to the Great Commission.

I am sensing that it's time for us live a more loving than judging lifestyle in and among this world.

If you're outside the Jesus tribe and wonder what it's really supposed to look like to follow Jesus...

If you're part of our Jesus tribe and I've confused you because you thought our job was to hold the line and decry all that's wrong in the world...

Then maybe this short 62 page eBook will help. I wrote it because I care about Jesus, you, me and our world. I wrote it because I want to be part of the solution, not just part of a bitchy blogosphere. (Someone just reached for a stone ;-)

Click the book below and it will take you directly to the PDF. I don't want your email or info. This is just the free offer of some artful, inspired words that may help.