August 4th, 2005

saxon cross


Had a long, and on the whole, productive meeting of the Xtn Education Committee tonight. But I came home kinda down.

There are times when it seems you can hardly get the offer out of your mouth before you've got people (youth, usually, in my case) jumping and snatching to take part in what you're offering. I've had those times; they're wonderful.

And then there are times when it seems you can't give away what you're selling. Everybody's busy, everybody wants it in a different color (time, day, whatever), nobody believes you can do what you say you will. I've had those times, too; they're frustrating.

One of the perennial temptations in ministry is to just withdraw yourself from the trample and disappointment of working with people. You imagine a ministry where you just do what you were gonna do -- and whether or not other people join up with you is their thing, no responsibility of yours. Being a hermit has a certain attraction for me that way. I could go off in the woods and pray -- if you join me, that's cool; if you don't, my offering of self in ministry is not dependent upon your reaction to what I do. (No wonder I keep fantasizing about retirement.)

But Jesus was out there hustling and bustling with people. He called people to him -- which means, he risked rejection. Some people (a lot of people) didn't "get it." People dropped out. They whined. Am I better than my Lord that I should be spared the hassles of dealing with people? Is this ministry? No.

So I'll go forward with my plans for this year's work. I'll invite people to participate. I'll do the best I can do. Some will sign up and discover what God has for them. Other things nobody will sign up for, and I'll have to shelve those plans and programs. That's the way it goes. But, gee, I'd love to have a few enthusiastic folks to jump at what I'm offering right now.