If you're one of the two regular readers of this blog then you know that I've been away for several months (I believe my last post was written on March 18). When I last posted I had shared with you that our family was working through a crisis that was almost more than we could bear. It seems that we may be finally seeing the end of that long and winding road...
But that particular road merged into a super highway of more trouble. I will do my best to summarize without any particular comment.
In March I became aware of additional issues at our church and began the process of ferreting out the truth. Difficult, unpopular decisions were made and there was a massive backlash. It became obvious to me that my position was in jeopardy.
In April I had a heart attack, my third since 2010. I spent 6 days in the hospital and had another stint placed in a small artery. I returned home on a Thursday. The situation at our church continued to deteriorate and the stress began to grow more and more severe. After being home four days I was taken back to the hospital by ambulance with an apparent heart attack. After another five days spent in two hospitals it was determined that I had not had another heart attack but had experienced what is called an arterial spasm. Additional information about the condition of my heart was uncovered during the myriad of tests and such. I came home on a Friday with instructions to rest through the weekend.
The next Sunday I was informed that my continued performance of my duties was unnecessary.
I had been home two days.
I know that many of you who will read this will not approve of my sharing this information, you will feel that I am damaging the church, my reputation, and the cause of Christ. I want to tell you something; my honesty about my situation will do more to advance the cause of Christ than all the posturing that we do to appear "Christian." The world doesn't need a sanitized version of Jesus, of the faith. The prosperity gospel and the watered down thing that passes for faith today are actually driving people away from Jesus. The world needs to see a Jesus who wept, grew weary, and who gave his life for broken, wounded people like me and every other lost person in the world.
Am I angry? At times, yes. Am I worried? I struggle not to be, and lose that struggle more than I win. Do I wish ill upon those who hurt me and my family?
I have placed my trust in God and believe that somehow He will work all this out in a way that brings Him glory and restores my soul. These past few months have been so very hard, but I know that at sometime, if not in the here and now then in eternity, God will bring justice. My responsibility is to follow Him as faithfully as I can and submit myself to His will daily.
Does this make me a hero? No. It makes me a fellow struggler...It makes me human. A human who needs a love that heals, a love that restores, a love that overcomes. I am a person who needs Jesus.