Monday, November 16, 2009
Ambushed, Firebombed and Fragged for Jesus
I was first introduced to Matt Chandler (pastor of The Village Church in TX) listening to recordings of one of his talks at the Acts 29 Network conference earlier this year. I found his style engaging, his thoughts penetrating, and his focus challenging.
Internet Monk recently pointed to this talk he gave in front of a seminary class at Southern Baptist Seminary. I can't embed it, but take time to go to the link and listen to it. It's about 40 minutes long, but well worth it.
This is a combat veteran speaking to the troops still in training about what they should REALLY expect when they hit the beach. He pulls no punches here, and calls those fresh faced kids out in a pretty spectacular way. I have known some seminarians that I wish had heard this. I think I may have heard it sometime before I almost went to seminary.
He also calls out the whole pastoral industrial complex of american evangelicalism. It's amazing what Jesus can do in spite of us.
At moments over the last several years, I have thought that I might be hearing noises. Those noises sound an awful lot like what I remember when I thought I was hearing God's call years ago. My perspective on those noises now is quite different than it was 25 years ago. I haven't been fighting on the same front, but the battle scars I am carrying definitely change the way I see things. I am perhaps beginning realize the depths of my ignorance at 20. I had no way of knowing how different things really are when you get older. How different I am, now that I am older.
The shepherd game sure looks different from this angle.
It's a hell of a business, taking on hell and telling it where to go in Jesus' name. I have seen pastors ambushed, firebombed and fragged. I think anyone who sits in a pew can benefit from hearing this just as much as a prospective pastor.