Beyond “Authenticity”

Recently, I was reading a favorite author/theologian of mine (I’m very sorry I can’t remember who it was, but if it comes to mind I’ll post it). He was discussing “sermon preparation”, and he wrote something to the effect of, “I’ll struggle through the texts and commentaries so that my congregation won’t have to.”

That really set things into perspective for me, and I was thinking about it again this morning.

A lot of the time, we enjoy the image of the Pastor as the-same-as-you person. An approachable man or woman that you can talk to and share your life with. And that’s valid; completely.

But sometimes, I wonder if we neglect the other, deeper parts of our calling, if we over-emphasize “buddy pastor” (in the same way like to hang out with “buddy Christ?).

Perhaps it’s our job to wrestle with the “deep things” — actually, if we believe it, the “deepest things” — and to find some understanding and method to this world, to our God. Authenticity is important, but I need more than authenticity when I go to a doctor. I want someone who can understand my body and give me an explanation for what’s wrong and develop a plan for me on how to get better. I want more than a friend…

… Therefore, I don’t feel ashamed about including the words theopany, justification, and sanctification in my coffee shop conversation this morning.


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