Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Open Up the Floodgates - A Letter from Pastor Todd

Dear PoC Family,

Have you ever met someone who suffered from spiritual constipation? They refuse to release free-flowing blessings to others, instead choosing to constantly display the gross discomfort of a backed-up soul. It’s hard to watch. Sad, really. I see it most often after a service or an event when the “reviews” come in or when the smart and necessary “evaluation” is asked for from the planning team. There are those on every team that will address the issues that needed corrected or tweaked, but only after they encourage, build-up, praise and appropriately call a good day a good day as if to say, “Sure, there are some minor things we need to fix, but first, let me bless you generously with my words.” Then there are others who quite obviously enjoy addressing the bad, taking great delight in their ability to spot what they truly believe can only be seen by their specialized and trained eye, yet you won’t find any blessing or praise before, during, or after the critique. Painful, because you can see the discomfort. You can actually witness the shifting in their seat as spoken blessings are desperately trying to crawl out of their mouth only to be washed down with a stoic and determined swallow of refusal and a steely-eyed glare. Everything about their posture says, “I could bless you with my words if I wanted to . . . but . . . I don’t want to.” They become known as someone who can’t bless with words.

Why do you think we refuse to bless others? What underlying selfishness or jealousy, fear or disloyalty, insecurity or uncertainty is behind our tight-lipped, tight-fisted, tight-wad insistence to hoard away and keep for ourselves all that our Dad has given? We forget that blessings weren’t meant to be kept in a barrel. They were made to flow through a pipe. As conduits of Dad’s loving-kindness we can enjoy the true joy that comes from generously giving like heroes with our . . .

 - Words of blessing. Lord, who do you want me to bless with my words today?
- Acts of service. Lord, what can I do to serve others today?
- Gifts of thanksgiving. Lord, what can I give to show my gratitude and appreciation for someone else today?

When I was a children’s pastor I took some kids on a trip from Nashville, TN to Myrtle Beach, SC. One of the boys that was on the trip suffered from a common childhood preference for his own home toilet rather than using unfamiliar “johns”. The trouble with this brilliant mindset is that when you are away from home for days on end, you’re gonna have to eventually cave to that preference . . . at some point. I remember a delightfully awkward moment while we were driving. He came to the front of the van and said, “Pastor Todd, I don’t know what’s wrong. My stomach hurts.” I looked around and saw that he did indeed look quite green. Worse, the poor boy was in that awkward pre-teen stage of life where anything a parent says is mortifying and as fate would have it, his mother was a chaperone on the trip. It doesn’t say much about me, but I took great pleasure in seeing the horror on this little man’s face as his mom asked the obvious and necessary, but no-less embarrassing question loud enough for all of his friends to hear, “Well, Honey, when’s the last time you had a BM?”

Awesome! Classic! Gross - necessary question. Giggles all around.

PoC, when’s the last time you had a mighty movement of blessings? I don’t want our church to be featured on some gross television program about hoarders. I want our church, starting with me, to be known for the sweet aroma of praise and giving, rather than the fowl stank of . . . well, a great great clog in the system. Because . . . we were made to recirculate all of Dad’s blessings so that all of our brothers and sisters (lost and found) can come to find their identity as His kids.

This week we’re going to have a blast (snicker . . .) as we explore our next Holy Currency: Bless. Plan to join us now. Invite all you can. Come ready to be a blessing.

Lord, open up the floodgates. We want to see YOU.

Your pastors are praying for you.

Give Like Heroes,

Pastor Todd

P.S. Not to be too gross, but this one time, my uncle took chocolate Ex-lax to school and passed it out to everyone like it was candy. Yeah . . . it got things movin’. I wonder what the spiritual equivalent to Ex-lax might be? We need some ‘o dat!!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comments!