Things I Think…

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26 Responses

  1. Dan from Georgia says:

    4 – isn’t that where “Ichabod” comes in? Written across many a church and Christian organizations.

    8 – COVID has hit my workplace. Again. Some on bout #(a number greater than 1) of the virus. I went and got my booster last night. A few co-workers would probably call me a name, but I am learning not to get my feathers ruffled about people like that.

    1 – by several accounts, I am probably not saved in some people’s eyes. Again, I am learning (not always sucessfully) to let them be and not engage anymore.

    Some good and sobering thoughts from you Micheal…as always much apprecited from myself.

  2. Michael says:

    Dan,

    Thank you.
    “Ichabod” indeed…

    I wear a mask everywhere now…and I’m often the only one and I hear the things they are saying…they don’t care that I have a heart and lung issues and care for a very demented mom…and I’m learning to not care that they don’t.

    Stay safe, my friend…

  3. Dan from Georgia says:

    Thanks Micheal ~!

  4. Em Wegemer says:

    Love your enemy…..
    True story: In Edmonds our next door neighbor were Satanists and their. driveway was on on our property. My dear husband told them, “Don’t worry about it as you couldn’t get out of your garage without crossing our property.”

  5. Linn says:

    Michael, I’m thankful my church is fairly balanced. The senior pastor has his moments, but the elders seem to have put a leash on him in some areas (like telling people how to vote from the pulpit). However, I’m wondering about the response if we have another big COVID wave. I am masked again at school, and I will be masked at church Sunday-not so much because of COVID but because of flu (my school currently has 50 kids out with it). I tend to ignore what people say and go about my business. I just decided I had to grow a thicker skin and let the comments roll off my back (quack, quack). I know that’s harder to do as a pastor/church leader, and even harder in places where MAGA reigns supreme.

    I have a feeling that God is going to be reshaping the church in the coming years. We certainly can’t continue the way we are and have a viable ministry/witness to the world. There’s always that faithful remnant, and I hope to be a part of it.

  6. Michael says:

    Linn,

    ‘There’s always that faithful remnant, and I hope to be a part of it.”

    I think He’s keeping you there…and I’m glad of it.

  7. Steve says:

    Michael, Regarding number 6, I assume you are referring to Matt Chandler. This is the first time I heard he was a “fallen” pastor. I’m no fan of Chandler, but the church seemed crystal
    clear he was not disqualified from the get go. I’m still puzzled why he had to step down briefly in the first place. Can you please elaborate what you mean by “fallen”?

  8. Michael says:

    The church isn’t going to tell you what happened…and that’s the problem. It was obviously something they didn’t want coming out….and this church has a history of cover ups.

  9. Steve says:

    Yes the lack of transparency is the problem. The entire narrative doesn’t make much sense but I really want to give Chandler the benefit of the doubt.

  10. Anne says:

    According to People magazine, “The Megachurch pastor went on a leave of absence after an investigation into messages he exchanged with a woman who is not his wife were found to be inappropriate.”

  11. Officerhoppy says:

    Michael
    @ 6

    Was it a paid “vacation”?

  12. Jean says:

    Officerhoppy,
    I don’t know the facts, but in a case like this the probability is very high that at a minimum the pastor received severance of full pay and health insurance benefits for 6-12 months, given his tenure. I remember when a certain mega church pastor in Florida had to step down for sexual sin the church elders gave him what they called a confidential “care package.” It was probably obscene or it wouldn’t have been kept secret.

  13. Michael says:

    Officerhoppy,

    It’s always paid…

  14. Michael says:

    Jean,

    That care package was a million for the wolf and half a million for his wife.
    His victims received nothing…

  15. Jean says:

    I can’t even process how elders, responsible for the kingdom-directed offerings of the laity, could justify a $1.5 million payout. Sickning!

  16. Jean says:

    I suppose these obscene payouts (in a way “awards” or “rewards”) for disqualifying behavior by a pastor is a result of churches being run like businesses (which is an element of the church growth movement), where the pastor is the CEO and when he leaves, even by dismissal, he receives a golden parachute.

  17. Michael says:

    “I can’t even process how elders, responsible for the kingdom-directed offerings of the laity, could justify a $1.5 million payout.”

    If you knew what I know, you’d wonder why they didn’t expose him to the world to protect people…let alone pay him off to keep doing what he does.

  18. Linn says:

    Jean,
    It also comes with a “no disclosure” statement about other goings-on in a church. That’s what happened at the church I attended many years ago where the pastor was a serial adulterer. The “elders” (called deacons at this church) knew of his misdoings, but never confronted him about it or let others know. There was a whole leadership conspiracy around the pastor that was very concerning. It wasn’t until the husband found out and made it all public (small town and all that) that the pastor was confronted and forced to resign, with his golden parachute.

  19. L.H. says:

    Last night at Bi-Mart I had to tell the cashier I couldn’t read her lips since she had a mask on. I wasn’t trying to ignore her directions, I just couldn’t make them out. Then I added that it wasn’t a commentary about her wearing a mask. I don’t wish anyone to be shamed about wearing a mask. Here in Southern Oregon, we wear them for all sorts of reasons. Horrible wildfire smoke and poor air quality, working with construction materials we could inhale, keeping pollens out of our airways, or even just to keep ourselves from inhaling airborne bacteria, or germs. Or, to keep ourselves from sharing what we have with others. The assumptions and resulting reactions from strangers is ridiculous. I don’t demand others explain why they wear an oxygen machine, or orthotic shoes, or even their tattoos. They obviously have a reason and it doesn’t involve me.

    Michael, if you’re ever in my vicinity, I’ll wear a mask also so you’ll have company. Maybe I’ll even wear two just to irritate any detractors. 😉

  20. Michael says:

    L.H.

    I don’t get out much, but I’m in Southern Oregon.

    I have friends and family that work at both hospitals and the V.A…and masking is a real good idea right now…
    I like your point about not asking people why they do what they do…well said.

  21. Nathan Priddis says:

    Mask wearing is on the increase in my area. It turns out that some parents don’t want their child sick when the ER turns away the public. I no longer get looks when I walk into stores.
    But there’s still part of me that wishes I had marked 666 on my masks during peak COVID. Missed opportunity I guess.

    #3. Yes Michael, I believe your right. More right than you may realize. Israel created the office of King by popular demand. I predict the Church will too. Trump was effectively a divine king and messiah. He was more than a medieval European monarch that happened to espouse faith, but a figure sent from God, to advance the Kingdom.

    I’m convinced the future holds more such figures, and further development of the concept. It will be like pastor, teacher or evangelist. Another office, but cut from whole cloth.

  22. Nathan Priddis says:

    btw. Been seeing FB post of ER horror stories. Worst was a small child transported to 4 hospitals to get a pediatric admission. Long ambulance ride from our county.

    Hope all of us with health issues stay safe this season.

  23. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    Pertinent to points 1-3, I’m kind of on marathons of Emil Brunner, Ephraim Radner and John Neville Figgis lately and this week’s Things I think got me thinking of something I read in Figgis just this week:

    https://archive.org/details/cu31924020347351

    … We cannot eat our cake and have it. We cannot claim liberty for ourselves, while at the same time proposing to deny it to others. If we are to cry “hands off” to the civil power in regard to such matters as marriage, doctrine, ritual, or the conditions of communion inside the Church—and it is the necessary condition of a free religious society that it should regulate these matters—then we must give up attempting to dictate the policy of the State in regard to the whole mass of its citizens. …

    John Neville Figgis, Churches in the Modern State (1911 lectures given in Gloucester), Lecture III, pages 112-113

    My blog is still on hiatus but if it weren’t … that would be a post unto itself.

  24. Reuben says:

    7

    “Against the world” is kinda a given. There isn’t really anything that says to the Christian that their behavior being worldly makes them worldly. The objective is to stand in judgement on god’s side. It’s what draws the line in acceptable behavior. If you’re “saved”, it’s fine. If you’re not, well… And the irony is the world ought to be saved from evil.

  25. dusty says:

    #5 Remember they hated Jesus for being the Truth and telling truth….you are loved, Michael, because you tell the truth.

    #6 I think “pastor” should have been in quotes …and if his followers welcomed him back, they deserve what they get. yet i do pray for the poor blind and deaf people that they are. Open their eyes that they may see, open their ears that they may hear….

    #8 still praying for your family big brother.

    #9 I have no social media….only pop in here from time to time to see the family here. sure miss the fun days we have had here. Have grown a lot from many who come here. Michael our ties will not be severed…I feel that way about a few others here that I consider family/friends…I will always have you in my thoughts, in my heart and in my prayers.

  26. Michael says:

    Dusty,

    Always good to see you here…you will always be family.

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