It all began one day, in the office of the church where I served as Senior Pastor. Mounting frustration had me pacing the floor–an unhappy patch of carpet in my office space. My problem wasn’t with the congregation I served at that time, or with the many problematic positions I had pastored leading up to that moment. It was a big picture problem which I would not be able to name for another few years.
Were everything bearing the mark of imperfection so blasphemously rejected, then who among us could stand? — Barton Stone
At that moment, however, God began speaking to my heart, beginning with one question: “What do you value?” I could have pondered the question over-simplistically or at unending length. But along with the question, God tapped a place deep within me and the answer was right there. I went over to my computer and began typing. “I value Courtesies, Collars, and Constructs.” I kept typing with greater revelation.
Obviously, any Christian would immediately list God, salvation through Christ, and the present help of the Holy Ghost. Instinctively, I knew that such values were given, superior priorities. It was something “other” that the Lord was prodding out of me. It had to do with me–with me living out my Faith, with me serving as a pastor, and the answer would be key to my own peace in going forward.
So, without time to hum and haw over an answer, God drew out from me, with immediacy, the things which mattered most deeply to me—matters which had been disregarded through circumstance, for many years. But suddenly, voilá! I recalled them aloud: “I value The Courtesies, such as Mr., Mrs., Dr., Pastor, and others. Some might call it a matter of being hung up on titles, but I am not an officious person. I value, The Clerical Collar—just about every job in every culture has its uniform, but for some reason, many camps within Christianity decided along the way that they didn’t need them and so withdrew a particular presence from society. Finally, The Constructs—that is, Church buildings that looked like Church builds. And again, a precious presence within society was extricated from the daily lives of people.
Rather than composing long essays for each of these values (as well as other values which emerged over the course of time), I will begin unpacking them through video presentations, located under the “Theo’s Logic” tab in the menu. I truly look forward to sharing my dearest convictions with you all, Family of God Almighty. I look forward to laying out for you all the brick by brick construction of how an Ancient-Now Congregation might look. “Come and see!” said the Lord Jesus. Come and see, say I.