monday mornings are usually a time to catch up on current events…what’s going on in culture, both pop and church. i quick-read various news sources, check out about 25-30 of my most trusted bloggers, and open a handful of social commentaries that are emailed directly to me.
most of the time, i enjoy staying informed. i love seeing how culture is shaped…new trends…and how lifestyle shifts from day to day. i know there are people who are uncomfortable with change. they long for “the good old days”, when life was simpler and less cluttered by technology, media and the moral ambiguity of our post-modern world.
me? not so much. maybe it’s just because of the way i’m wired or because of a lifetime of hanging around teenagers (always the frontline of cultural shift), but no matter the reason, i suppose i’ve always been more comfortable with change than most.
so reading about it is one of the ways i stay aware…and emotionally prepared for the inevitable realities we will all have to live through. but it doesn’t mean i have to like all of it.
this morning, i read about things a number of big-name, high-profile pastor types did over the past few weeks to make headlines. if those things are true, as reported…i’m disgusted. if they are only partially true…i’m just deeply saddened. either way, i find it hard to believe (based on the trustworthiness of those who are reporting, imo) they are completely innocent and victims of slander.
it makes me feel three things:
first, i’m grateful my life and the church i call my family flies below the radar. i rest knowing that my opinion is not coveted by the masses…my interpretation of the bible only means something to the people who know me…my “sound bites” are not being recorded…and the paparazzi is not following me around to capture my mundane life for the world to judge. whew.
second, i so wish the church was not judged by the antics of celebrity, mega-church guys (some, not all). with great fame and power, comes great responsibility. my heart aches when those in the spotlight don’t use their platform wisely. (and for the record, being at the bottom of the church food chain is no excuse to live irresponsibly. size and integrity are mutually exclusive.)
third, judging others is risky business. yesterday, while i was sermonizing, i said something that took 24 hours to sink into me. personally.
the great news of the gospel is, though i am deeply flawed and full of sin and self-centeredness and definitely more than i am ever willing to admit to myself or others…i am still more loved, more forgiven, more accepted than i can fully comprehend. and those two realities exist in my life every day.
the “good” me and the “bad” me coexist simultaneously. and that’s what makes grace such an amazing thing.
so easy to receive. so difficult to give.