Not so much with the vulnerability (a prayer for pastors)

Great and Gracious God,

I hear the latest thing
is being vulnerable,
and I don’t mind
confessing to my flaws,
my shortcomings,
my eccentricities.

But there are times
when I am flat
when my own spirit
feels anemic
when I don’t know how
to raise the roof
when Hallelu is
a foreign language
when even punctuation
is a struggle
and my page is blank

not because I don’t know
and believe, which is different,
in You and Your glory
or the work I am striving
to do on Your behalf,
but because the things –
well, there are things.

Financial stress
Physical illness
Personal relationships
Family concerns
Vocational drama
or lack thereof
(any of these alone
and sometimes all
and even more)

And I would say:
not so much
with the vulnerability
we don’t preach that stuff
we don’t spill it all over
we don’t place that weight
on the people who gather

But I wonder
if the weight
isn’t evident

Doesn’t press down
on them as much
as on me

Doesn’t make them wonder
what they are doing wrong

And if I feel this way
maybe they need to know
that faithful people
struggle

But for that I need to confess it.

So here we are.

Help me, I pray.

Amen.

3 thoughts on “Not so much with the vulnerability (a prayer for pastors)

  1. Well, forgive me, but it made me laugh (which didn’t do any harm,at that0 remembering the clergy I have known who reaped an enormous reputation for compassion and tender-heartedness because in any difficult or distressing moment they made it abundantly clear that among those present they themselves needed to be cared for, most acutely. No such compassion was recognized in the behaviour of others who — sometimes quite literally — were mopping up the blood. And they got away with it for YEARS!!!

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