"You don't want to hide anything from your fans. It's just not worth it." (Kelly in film Country Strong).
On Sunday Lisa and I went out for breakfast. While we were sitting in the restaurant waiting for our food to arrive, I noticed an uncomfortable feeling in my gut. I quieted myself to get in touch with the feeling. Lisa noticed and asked, "What's wrong?" Then I suddenly realized: this restaurant was where I met with people while I was a pastor for a coffee or a meal. But the uncomfortable part was that those meeting were often adversarial. The people I met with frequently wanted to challenge me, criticize me, correct me, or convey their disagreements.
The last meeting I had there was very bad. Essentially the person told me I wasn't a good pastor, not a strong leader, and that the church would probably be better off without me. The strange thing is that this meeting was the culmination of several people who expressed the same sentiment. The voice of the evidence had become so loud that I simply couldn't ignore it anymore. We were no longer meant for each other. Those were meals eaten in bitterness.
Our food arrived. I took a deep breath. Let it all go. And dug in.
No heartburn this time.
(I took the above photograph of the deer this evening with my iPhone when I went for a walk.)