Thursday, March 30, 2006

Letter to the Emergent Soapbox

Dear Mr. Emergent Worship Seminar Leader:

I was wondering if you could come on down off your soapbox/pedestal so I could speak to you for a moment... I'll wait.

Took awhile didn't it?

I wanted to let you know how much I appreciated you coming out to the middle of a red state (the exact region that helped change us from a blue state) and sharing your ideas for emergent worship. I was so inspired. I think everyone was, especially when it became obvious that your ideas were solidly based in reformed tradition and liturgical fact. Your passion and love for Christ was so evident and contagious. Even the grumpiest were taking notes.

Truly, your keynote was inspiring.

I went to one of your classes and would have loved if things had been more structured, but I understand 'ENFP's a bit and was willing to go with the flow. Again, your passion, energy, knowledge and committment to what you were saying and doing were evident.

You love the Lord. Amen brother, Amen.

I was wondering if you realized who you were talking to when you said, "get the flags out of the Sanctuary."

With that on the table let me say this I agree with you. We are not worshipping the flag. We are not worshipping America or our leaders. We worship God. I agree when we say, "God bless America" we should also be saying "God bless Iraq. God bless Afghanistan. God bless Sudan." Amen brother, again I say amen.

I wonder though if you were so high up on your soapbox that you failed to see that you totally shut down your audience. In the name of what you believe is right - and again I agree with you - you laid for naught everything else you had taught us.

I was seeing an opening, an opportunity to do something crazy and radical in my worship service - some might even say emerging - by moving the font into the middle of the Sanctuary and using it during the Declaration of Pardon. Heck, I already got it out of the back room and into the front on a permanent basis, what is one more step. But once you made your flag declaration and would not back down (fair enough) or graciously change the subject (why?) it was over for me and for every other pastor in there who is patiently paying their dues at 'We Have Never Done It That Way Before Rural Red State Church.'

Do you know what one of the first pieces of advice I give to new pastors out here? "Don't move the flag." Why? Because their ministry will not even get off the ground and my denomination is losing young pastors fast enough as it is.

Maybe you see me as a coward and believe me sometimes I call myself that in the mirror. I hide my cowardice under phrases like, "don't want to die on that mountain." So yes, I do call myself 'coward'.

I also call myself breadwinner.

I have rambled on long enough. Thanks again for coming out... I only wish that your visit would be remembered for all it really was rather than for what most folks will come out remembering.

You can climb back up now... I will hand you your guitar.

Peace be with You,
The Woman Who Heard We Cannot Do Anything Recommended by 'That' Man

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