Actually, I use the word, "picking," to draw out the fact that I'm not sure whether to go forward with part 1. I am hoping for input.
We have talked about the the perfect church, but that was kind of a high level view. (Don't forget DK is doing The Perfect Church right now. He just posted installment #3 of 5.) I am now thinking about the kind of leadership that can make that church happen.
What does it mean to lead in the body of Christ?
Before I get there, though, I know where the path runs; it leads right through the family. Both of the main passages on picking elders start off with an evaluation of the candidate's family.
That is a touchy subject for anyone.
Approaching it as a divorced man with one unbelieving child and another struggling is somewhere between nervy, daunting, and asinine.
But I am not exactly alone in being a divorced believer. I have heard that the church's peformance in this area is statistically the same as the world's, and that the church actually exceeds the norm for society in general in child and spouse abuse. Of course, statistics being somewhat less reputable than damned lies, it is hard to know whether Christians are really doing better than society as a whole. It seems to me that we are not.
Given all that we now know about Rom 8:4, it is impossible that we should be doing so poorly in this critical area. If the Spirit enables us to live out the righteous requirements of the law, then we should all still be married, and happily at that. I'm just not seeing it happening.
So, why not?
Or, should we just say, "It's the fall. Bad things happen to good people. We're not perfect, just forgiven," and walk away? Is there something the church can do to prevent this trend? More weekend retreats? More sermons on submission?
Here's my mind on the subject of whether I should post on something for which I am utterly disqualified:
- I think we need to talk about this, if we are going to talk about the church. I think we need to talk about what the church is not doing for marriages that allows so many divorces. I think we need to talk about how the church should approach the divorced.
- I don't know what to say about it. I don't really even have coherent thoughts together yet, though I can sense them at the edges of my vision.
- If anyone thinks that we should not talk about this, then we will start there.
- If anyone thinks that we should talk about it, but that I am not the one, then I will ask you to post on your site and I will happily comment over there and shut up over here.
- If neither of those things happens, then I am going to try to screw up my courage and start a discussion. I will actively admit up front that all of my experience is of failure.
- I will be writing about other divorced people, not myself, as much as possible to keep the topic from getting too wierd. I post some pretty "out there" stuff about myself, I know, so I think that it would be wise to exercise a little discipline on this one.
Remember, the long term topic is leadership in the church, but before we get there we have to take a longish trip through the family in the church.