Thursday, July 26, 2007

What do you want?

Desire is one of the worst things in the world. I can think of few things that cause more problems than desires. Think of the ills of our current society - they can all be traced back to desire. The super-high divorce rate - desire plays into that. The problems with our weight - desire. The whole hollywood scene - desire.

What we as Pastors must remember is that the same problem holds true in the Church. I'm sure we could speak quickly to times when desire causes ruffles in the church - be it the stereotypical argument over the color of the carpet, people constantly wanting their own way with minutia - all the things that tend to make the Pastoral Office seem like it is actually the Complaint Office.

However, let us remember that the bug of desire pricks us as well. How often are we ourselves unsatisfied with this little thing or that little point about our congregation? How often do we want to make changes that we say are "better" when we really mean things that we prefer and understand - irregardless of what our people know or understand? How many brothers do you know who seem to be simply waiting for their next, "better" call? Indeed, we can lust after the perfect liturgical service, the perfect congregation, even the perfect synod - and put a pious shine to our desires that would have made the Pharisees blush.

Beat down your own desire, oh preacher! Every action you make in your office, every word you speak is to be for the benefit of the sheep you serve! Your desires confuse that, for desires are always seeking to serve the self, are the definition of incurvatus se. The same advice you give your people, take yourself. You are where God has placed you to serve - and He has indeed placed you there to serve His sheep, not yourself. Desire is indeed one of the worst things in the world.


Danny Mackey said...

Psalm 37:3-6

Trust in the Lord, and do good;
Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.
Delight yourself also in the Lord,
And He shall give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass.
He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light,
And your justice as the noonday

Desire is not bad in and of itself. The idea, of course, is that our will is conformed to the will of God - that we desire what God deems good for us. So, heh, don't beat up on desire. After all, God tells us that He will give us the desire of our heart.

Rev. Eric J Brown said...

I desire to call you "Dan" and so I shall!