A compilation of thoughts and topics from contributors of this blog:
One day one of my favorite pastors told me a story concerning a brief confinement in an urban city jail. His account went like this: One day I was driving down a country road outside of the city and just enjoying the view when suddenly I found myself pulled over by a small town cop. After forty-five minutes of waiting, I was suddenly handcuffed at gun point, thrown into a transport vehicle and locked up in an urban city jail. The charge was, “Grand Auto Theft.” After, sometime they later took me to a cell where I curled up to hide in shame. After two hours I heard the noise of a steel jail cell open, and to my surprise, I suddenly found myself sharing a cell with a fellow inmate.
Now the inmate asked me one question, “What are you in here for?” My response was quick and simple, “Mistaken Grand Auto Theft.”
Instantly, the inmate laughed and said, “That’s what we all say.” I quickly responded back out of disgust for his mocking and asked, “Well, what are YOU in for.” Without hesitation the inmate replied, “You see I’m the REAL DEAL. I’m in for First Degree Murder. So you best better get up out of that bed!”
From that point on until I left on bail, there was no conversation. I was glad that he told me he was the “Real Deal” fearing for my own life.”
In a few weeks from now the “Real Deal” is coming. Don’t you want to know what “they are in for” so that you will know how to preference what you will say or do? This election will affect pastors and members in either a positive or negative way. And most of the decisions concerning your well-being won’t be made by you. Unfortunately, those who are in power are afraid to reveal to us the “Real Deal.” Very little will be revealed concerning how money was spent and for why. Nor will you actually have a chance to debate or for a better word discuss as we have in this forum the future of our conference. They will only tell you what they want you to know for the sake of getting through the meeting as quickly as possible. Most delegates will leave the meeting feeling that they didn’t get the answers they were looking for as so many times in the past, they will leave with emptiness.
If you are heard, at least you can say “you tried.” “The step I took in opening this forum came with the responsibility of allowing people to say what they wanted to say whether people agreed or not.” I am okay with that. Comments will not be deleted unless they are inappropriate. The power of your words can make a difference and help our leaders see more clearly.
Thousands of people are already tuning into the relevant discussions by contributors on this blog. It’s sole purpose is to allow pastors and members a forum to voice their opinion. Through this process we can learn from each other. One email I received asked, “Who are you?” But he or she never asked the more relevant question, “Who are they, and how do they want to be remembered when all is said and done.”
I have learned that other conferences have blogs such as this one so that people can state their opinions anonymously or otherwise. “Right on” to those “cutting edge” conferences that allow their members to say what they mean. Good leaders have “thick skin” as Jonah_77 stated in one of his comments (You should visit Jonah_77’s comments concerning the Strategic Plan. He sounds like someone who writes them and implements them at the tactical level. Without this blog we would not benefit from his knowledge concerning such a plan proposed by the SWRC).
The question of the day is, “DO YOU KNOW WHAT THE REAL DEAL IS…AT THIS UPCOMING CONSTITUENCY MEETING? You ask the questions and you can find the answers. Or, if you know the problems of our conference, tell us what you think the issues are so we can discuss them and recommend solutions.
Do you know that there are forces at work today to swing the decisions of small committee members to persuade you to accept leaders whom know very little about this conference and your needs as constituents? Communicate with your local delegates and members of small committee and let them know what you need as a church. Send a message to everyone that backroom deals and favors are over we as constituents are better and smarter than that. Stay informed because so that you can improve this process.
Finally, I think the opinions of Craig and Left Behind, which are only contributors, should be discussed and solutions suggested. If you are concerned about how to place your comment, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org . I will respond to you.