Skip to main content

Lest Confusion Reign

Today, as my husband and I are working side-by-side, we occasionally stop to share our work, our thoughts, and our questions with one another.  I know we take this for granted.  Yesterday we sat in a room for hours, listening to ourselves and some others do first run-throughs of summer sermons.  Later in the day, as we continued to process what we’d written, what feedback we’d received, and what work to do next, I thought about how fortunate we are to share in this work.
When we sought out ministry positions in the same church, we looked forward to days of ministering alongside one another.  In many ways, that hasn’t worked out like we thought.  My husband does not even go to church with the kids and me.  He’s at a different campus several miles away.  We don’t get to do church together, and we don’t get to see each other in action.  It’s hard, but he loves the work he’s doing there, so I pray it’s worth the cost.  It’s much easier now than it was a year ago, and in a couple of years, our son will be able to choose going to church with Daddy or Momma.
So, we don’t get to worship, study the Bible, or work with teenagers together as I’d imagined.  But we do get to work on sermons together.  That’s pretty cool.  Granted, it’s handy to have a walking, talking Bible and Bible commentary as a husband.  But it’s more than that.  It’s comforting and comfortable to be able to talk through the Bible, its interpretation, its application, and its communication with someone who gets me, my personality, my style, and my audience.
The Reverends Frame at a wedding we jointly officiated.
Today, I’m working on plans for the next student ministry program and a summer book club for women at church while he’s prepping for an important leadership meeting and a lecture on the Baptist Controversy of the 1970’s and 80’s.  I turn my computer around and get his opinion on which graphic to use for marketing.  He reads quotes from Baptist leaders on both sides of the controversy.
The quote that had us cracking up was from the announcement in 1983 when the Southern Baptist Convention decided with 58% of the vote that women would not be ordained or allowed to have authority over a man.  This decision was made “lest confusion reign.” 
I asked my husband if I confused him.  “Every dad’gum day!” he replied.
I guess we women are confusing creatures.  Just this morning I went from being a put-together, ready-to-tackle the day working mom to a blubbering mess…all because of one innocuous e-mail.  Of course, it wasn’t the e-mail that was the problem.  It was the incessant, interrupting, overlapping, agreeing, contradicting, questioning, self-doubting dialogue that the e-mail started in my head.  I’m sure that dialogue is confusing to my husband; it’s confusing to me, too—hence the tears!
Do women leaders sometimes cause confusion in the church?  Sure.
Do male leaders sometimes cause confusion in the church?  Sure.
Shame on us if confusion reigns in the church.
Shame on us if strategic plans reign in the church.
Shame on us if women pastors reign in the church.
Shame on us if male pastors reign in the church.
Shame on us if anyone or anything other than the Lord, the King, reigns on his throne, over his church.


  1. Amen! Though I've got a great picture of you in a stately ball gown on a throne ordering subjects around


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

A Response to Charlottesville

Visiting our nation’s capital is an easy day trip for us, and how I chose to spend a precious vacation day this week.  I took pride in explaining the buildings and icons of my country to my children.  I am proud to be an American.  

But today, I am not proud.  
Today, I weep.

Four days ago, I saw the beautiful, infamous words “We the People” with my own eyes for the first time.  
Four days later, I am reminded of how far we still have to go to fully live into those words:
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

What has happened 63 miles from my home, in Jefferson’s beautifully-domed, colonnaded city, is far from perfect, just, or tranquil.
This is not what our founding fathers wanted for our country, nor is …

A Message to Graduates

I have been a Pastor to Students (The title has changed numerous times; the role remains.) in Powhatan, Virginia for roughly 12 years.  I daresay I've been ministering to teenagers in this community longer than many.

Over the last dozen years, I've gotten lots of cool opportunities to minister to teenagers in this area.   But one had always eluded me--speaking at a baccalaureate service.  My husband had done the honors.  Other great pastors in the area had as well.  Once, I'd offered the closing prayer.  

This week, that changed.  I had the distinct honor to share with the PHS Class of 2016 at their baccalaureate service.  It was a wonderful experience working with great students, parents, and school leaders.  I'm so grateful for the opportunity!!!

A few people missed it and have asked to see what I said, so here it is, ALL of it:

June 1999 I sat in this space for my Baccalaureate service.  Before I was a pastor at PCC, before I moved back to Powhatan to raise my family, …

Disillusionment of Adulthood

Now that I’m in my 30’s, I must confess to disillusionment.  Growing up, I had ideas of what adulthood would be like.  I’m here, and it’s not entirely what I’d imagined.
For starters, I remember growing up amidst all the drama that comes with, well, growing up.  The gossip.  The hurt feelings.  The misunderstandings.  The fights between friends.  The back-stabbing.  And I remember being told that it would get better.  I’m not sure who told me that, but they were clearly wrong.
The drama may look a little different.  The words may sound a little different.  But the anguish of relationships remains.
Adults hurt each other’s feelings—intentionally and unintentionally. Adults nitpick and cause fights over inconsequential issues. Adults gossip. Adults cry, scream, and pitch fits. Adults build relational alliances, competing in “us vs. them” relational war. Adults let issues build and exponentially swell until they explode. Adults rarely identify the actual issue instead of the presenting issue. Adul…