Saturday, June 28, 2003

Notes from the Road

States I've been in since Monday:

Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Kansas, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio...where I am tonight.

Miles driven since Monday:


Total miles on the new minivan:

2, 479

Today I buried my Grandfather. I was the "minister" but I so desperately wanted to be the grandson. I was able to help lots of people. That was good. I don't mind helping people. I just want to be a normal guy who loves Jesus and helps people. I'm tired of being seen as a professional pastor. I used to love it...not more than four years ago I was proud of it as a profession, but something has changed. Its more than a profession. Being a professional minister doesn't even make sense. A pro-servant? A pro-shepherd? A pro-missionary?

Don't get me wrong. I like working for Apex...I am so grateful for all of the people who sacrifice so that I can devote so many hours to church planting and encouraging church leaders. I just wish that I could explain to everyone that "my friends give me money so that I can devote my time to our common mission." Instead most people label me, for better or worse, as a pastor, or preacher (I got that a lot today in the hills of Kentucky) or a minister or whatever.

Speaking of pastor stuff, I was scheduled to speak at Central Christian in a few weeks, a big church in Vegas. I like speaking there because its fun to work the big room. It's a good dose of big church excitement and energy once a year so that I can remember why I like having church so much in Shad and Sherry's living room. I love being a part of a megachurch every 10-12 months. But...Central had to bump me for a prospective Sr. Pastor candidate. So, I'm both sad and relieved at the same time.

Ah life, one minute you're an up and coming minister and the next minute you want to spend your life with struggling minute you're packing your sesame street suitcase to spend the night with your Papaw, the next minute you're packing your family into a minivan to preside at his minute you are being strong at the funeral, the next minute you weep while typing a blog.

I love you, Papaw. I'm sorry that I didn't call you very often, but neither of us liked talking on the phone at all. I know that you stuggled with God...just like me. I hope that there is a literal heaven and I hope that you are there...I'm proud of you. You were a kind and gentle man. I don't know if I am that yet, but I want to be.

I conclude this blog with the exact words that my Papaw would say if he read the above paragraph...

Bulllllshit. (This was his way to say, "I love you too.")

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