This is one of those posts that comes along from time to time where I have a project that needs to be done, but I completely and totally lack the motivation to work on said project. So I turn my attention to little projects that are somewhat fun to do, in the hopes that I will some how smack ketchup bottle of my mind correctly and loose the creative juices that are needed. Unfortunately, I also feel like this kind of leads to stream of consciousness blog posts that will frighten children and confuse the elderly.
What should I be doing right now? Writing a sermon for this weekend. You see, this weekend is our church's adult retreat, which means that my boss is gone, and the backup goalie has to suit up. So I'll be preaching at all three services. Oh, and it's a communion Sunday, and I've never presided over the table at the 8:30 or 11:00 services. Oh, and there are children's choirs on the first Sunday of the month. Oh, and there are two baptisms to be done. So, if we are to have any hope of finishing in less than an hour, my sermon will likely be 8 and a half minutes long. You would think that writing an 8 minute sermon would be way easier than writing a 20 minute sermon. But you'd be wrong. So I'm stalling.
In all of this though, I have to give props to Jim as a Senior Pastor. He's said more than a couple of times this last week that it's the co-pilot's aircraft, and I really think he means it. I am really only 3 months into being an ordained pastor, and this weekend I'm going to be in charge of everything going on in a really big deal church. This wasn't the only choice that Jim had. He could have brought in a more seasoned pulpit supply. He could have stayed behind. He could have booked the retreat for a less busy weekend. But at some point the pilot trusts the co-pilot to take over, and that's what Jim's done for me this weekend. For that, I am both grateful and inspired. Gratefulness in this moment is obvious if often understated. I don't know a lot of senior pastors who would let a young guy like me take charge for a weekend.
But it's also got me thinking a bit about the work we do in youth ministry. I am, admittedly, a control freak. This shows itself to be true when I'm driving, when I'm editing a movie, and in any programs that I am directly in charge of. I want to make sure everything is exactly as I want it, and the best way to do that is to make sure that I do it myself.
But even as a 33 year old man, I feel this tremendous sense of pride knowing that my boss trusts me enough to leave me in charge for the weekend. I wonder if I could give that sense of pride to more of the students that gather in my youth group if I left them in charge of more? Not completely unsupported, but just in charge, where they can make the choices they want, feel the gravity of their decisions, and celebrate the joy of their victories. To our credit I think we do that a lot here at Westminster with our student leadership team. I just wonder if we could do it more.
Maybe I could start by asking one of the kids to write an 8 minute sermon for me...