Friday, May 1, 2015


So, how fast should life run? And how much should we expect to accomplish as a result? I'm from New York City. Spent my first thirty some years in metropolitan NY. So, the answers I was given to those questions were: a little faster and more.

Answers like that tend to bleed over into one's understanding of God and His expectations of us. So, people like me have assumed that He also is answering, 'a little faster' and 'more'. But the more that I think about it, the less that feels right.

Think about it. When Jesus showed up, the descendants of Abraham had been waiting for more than just a little while. And here we are, some two thousand years after Jesus' ascension, still waiting for His return. God's sense of time, His pace, does not seem to come from New York City.

All of that comes home to me not just as I consider myself and my expectations of me - though it really does have a lot to say to me. But it has other implications because I'm a pastor. I've been charged with the care of a certain group of people. And there's a question comes at me as I do what I can to fulfill that charge: What should I expect of these folk? It doesn't seem right to answer that with, 'a little faster' and 'more'. There are lots of times when I tell myself, 'Life would be better for that person if he/she changed that and did it this way.' That relates to marriages and children and jobs and lots of things. And I actually think that I'm usually right. (It's amazing what you can discover about life after 64 years of learning from mistakes.) But I've been wondering if I actually should say anything in those situations. Is that wanting them to run a little faster and to accomplish more?

Now it needs to be said that I do see change in them. So, it's not as if they are doing nothing. (They really are a good church.) But the question is pace. I'm thinking that it just might be better for me to be quiet and to wait for God to act in their lives. Let Him set the pace. And that 'acting in their lives' includes the opportunities that He gives me, times when someone will come to me and ask for my opinion. I'm thinking that I just might need to adopt more of God's sense of time, His pace. Maybe 'slower' and 'a little less' are better answers. But that's hard for an ex-New Yorker.