Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Justin and Challies: just kinda funny

Both those good brothers — Justin and Challies — are all (as) excited (as they get) because The Driscoll told Francis Chan that everyone thought he was nuts. Gasp!

If only someone had taken a cold hard look at Chan's announcement before now!

Like... oh, I don't know... four months ago? And again from a different angle? And again?

Just sayin'.

Yours faithfully,
DJ "Cassandra" P

31 comments:

Kim said...

If this was a Facebook status, I'd "like" it.

I didn't really fully understand all of Chan's reasoning, etc., but I'm just a weak little ole woman, so maybe that is why.

Fred Butler said...

you forgot the "me,me,me" tag.

Kim, you need to be more hip if you want God to give you the Easter egg secrets to really knowing His for your life. Start wearing a pair of blue jeans and printed tee shirts to church and maybe get you a pair of those J.J. Abram reading glasses. Shaving your head won't hurt, either.

Fred Butler said...

...And speaking of God's will (and maybe Dan covered this previously in one of his brilliantly written articles), but why does everyone thinking God is calling him or her to do something "out of the comfort zone" think God wants them to live in the slums of Rio, or drug alley in New York City? I mean, pastoring a 60 member church in rural Nebraska isn't out of Francis's "comfort zone?"

Everyday Mommy said...

This is why we need you, Dan. You keep track of all this stuff :)

Robert said...

Fred,

I would add that the church in rural Nebraska needs pastoring as much as the churches in the cities. Why can't we raise up godly men to go pastor areas like that and be content with the ministry that has been provided? (I am not a pastor, but that is just the thought that comes to mind) Shouldn't the pastor be committed to the flock just as much as we expect members to be?

Sir Aaron said...

Fred:

I think the answer to your last question is obvious. It's a works based feeling. Don't you ever get the impression after God tells the rich man to sell all of his possessions, that you should do the same thing? And when you think of the poor and downtrodden, where does your mind go first? Watts or Nebraska?

I see it a lot with missionaries that come into town. They give up everything to live in some village of tribals somewhere and when they come to the states they tell you to give more, to sacrifice more. So one gets the impression that in order to become more Godly, one should sell their possessions and dedicate their full-time to ministry, preferably in some place that is dangerous and crime ridden.

Brad Williams said...

Yeah, I saw on Pyros that Phil tweeted, "Francis Chan elevates pious obfuscation to an art form."

I saw the clip and thought, "This is embarrassing. I'm embarrassed watching this on several levels. Someone make this stop." Awkward.

Was it just me that felt that way?

BwayneM said...

enjoyed your articles when they were written Dan... enjoy them now... I'm with you...

Kim said...

Fred:

Well, shaving my head would definitely save me money in the hair dressing department, but I live in Canada, and that could be pretty chilly when winter sets in.

DJP said...

Oh, Kim, just wear a took, a tuke, a touque, a... you know.

Douglas said...

I don't know why Driscoll is being praised for what he did. Seemed to me like he sucker punched Chan for the benefit of the camera.

Reminded me more like a reality show set up....or a Katie Couric type of move than the way a Mr. Manly Man would act.

Anyway, for what its worth, your 4-21-10 post helped me tremendously.

DJP said...

Means a lot, Douglas. Thanks for saying so.

trogdor said...

I've always thought of you as more of a G'Kar than a Cassandra.

DJP said...

Well, the bad teachings I take off after do make a most agreeable thump when they hit the floor....

Bobby Grow said...

As I listened to the interview with Driscoll, Harris, and Chan it seemed to become apparently clear that there was more going on behind the scenes (with his church, and the ministry direction he was heading in) than originally was made clear, by Chan. I thought Driscoll's sucker punch was fruitful in some ways . . .

JK said...

How such a short blurb from Dan, a video, and 14 metas can get me so going...whew...

In any case:

Brad said: "I saw the clip and thought, 'This is embarrassing. I'm embarrassed watching this on several levels. Someone make this stop.' Awkward. Was it just me that felt that way?"

I basically felt the same way and navigated away...

For Dan: have you thought about shaving your head?

Robert said...

I watched the video and it just made me think that I am sure almost every pastor has had a point where they wish they could start over with a new congregation. Maybe those thoughts are more prominent for some than others, but I am sure they are still there at some level at some point in time during the span of their ministry. That is not a good reason to leave and start over, though.

And this talk of getting people to approach the other elders is also a problem that occurs in most churches. The pastor and elders have to lead the charge there in a sense and get out and make personal connections with the flock in order to make themselves more approachable...just my humble opinion. I get the sense that Chan thinks he'll find the perfect church out there somewhere and to find it he needs to go to those he feels are more needy. I liken this to the thought that we don't see "da gifts" here in the US because we aren't Christ-like enough...to which I say hogwash.

I have a pastor friend who was forced out of his church. There were times when he thought about leaving and actually looked at other churches, but then he realized that he was committed to his congregation and that he was being unfaithful to them by looking elsewhere. From that point he determined to stay and preach the Word as long as they would have him. The only reason he didn't go back to preach is that he was told there would be a physical altercation if he showed up to preach and he didn't want to cause such a spectacle at the church. He has since left and started a new church, with many of the old congregation following him and serving in the new church. He got to start over, but only after working diligently with the flock that God had entrusted to him. To me, this is what being a pastor is all about. You love the sheep and you do everything you can to care for them. Again, just my humble opinion.

Fred Butler said...

I get the sense that Chan thinks he'll find the perfect church out there somewhere and to find it he needs to go to those he feels are more needy.

I believe you are giving him a bit too much credit for what it is really worth.

To be very candid, I think Chan made a boneheaded, selfish decision, based upon some pet projects he could not get done where he was located. Because he has bathed his "decision" in spiritual talk of being "radical for God" and "getting out of the comfort zone" and other such nonsense, no one dares to call him out and to repentance. They all stroke their chins and blather about how we all can learn a spiritual lesson from such a courageous, Christ-following pastor like Francis.

The only ones not susceptible to these Jedi mind tricks is our intrepid DJP and others like him, but their ignored because they are just little "bloggers." I mean, what do "bloggers" like DJP know any ways.

Robert said...

Fred,

I agree with your point about the pet projects...he obviously made that clear in this video even. I was just giving him the benefit of the doubt based upon other comments he made in that clip as well. The perfect church for Chan may well be one that is more convenient for such projects. In which case, I would say that he needs to get out of the role of pastor and just work in those projects if he feels that is what God has equipped (not called) him to do.

I guess I'm curious to hear how pastors and elders feel about this as far as commitment to the local church is concerned. To me, I'd feel leaving a church should be the same for a pastor as it would be for any other member.

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Hi Dan,

Seems like you've got two conversations going, one relating to Chan's written reasoning (with your spot-on dissection last April), and the other regarding his explanation/defense in that painful video clip.

I'm curious about a third question. And if this is too far afield for this post, well... you've got your comment moderation and my feelings won't be hurt.

I'm wondering if it isn't a Really Good Thing for some of these big name pastors to move on and start afresh from time to time. Seems like their churches (even the really good ones) tend to produce a lot of clones of the leaders and their larger-than-life personalities.

And while I'm not approving his rationale (which I don't have a clear understanding of), he's hardly abandoning his flock, what with the nearly 20 pastors and staff (per their website), and the lead-time he gave them.

Just wondering what you think.

Julie

DJP said...

To give a little answer to your big question, I think I agree. I've often said that I'd like to see megachurch pastors change their names and take a 30-member church in Flyspeck, NV, every ten years or so. (Or words to that effect.)

But say what you're doing, and why.

I underscore and double everything I said about Chan's semi-prophetic hyper-spiritual rationale.

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Amen, and I agree!

Brad Williams said...

For what it's worth, I want to chime in and say that I think it is silly to chide Pastor Chan over "flock abandonment." Like Herding Grasshoppers said, they have elders, and you would think that the years he spent mentoring them count for something. It's the rationale behind his leaving that is suspect.

It's more honest to look the elders in the eye and say, "Guys, I've been here 15 years. I have a desire to plant a church in Flyspeck where there is no healthy church. I love you, and I want and need your support in this."

That, to me, is not only acceptable but admirable. Especially if the pastor is known to be patient, wise, and steadfast.

Alas, I fear I belabor the point. But I just had to say it.

And my problem with the video was on many levels. I'll share them. You guys can pray for me if I seem cynical:

1. It looked like younger guys trying to copy the T4G roundtable, but not nearly so cool. (These guys are my age.)

2. The "rebuke" from Driscoll seemed odd. He left the topic planned, made the comment in a semi-joking manner (cuckoo for cocoa puffs??), which I found to be very awkward. Though, I am not unthankful that the subject was broached.

3. Is it just me, or does anyone else find it odd that a pastor from California, a pastor from Seattle, and a pastor in Maryland make buddy pastor videos. I mean, the first time I recall Sproul and MacArthur interact was when they debated baptism. (Though, that has more to do with chance, perhaps. Maybe they made buddy pastor videos before that.)

4. All three of these guys put me on edge with their ideas of spiritual gifts, specifically the "God told me stuff directly in my head in visions and leadings" kind. That sort of teaching opens the door to horrific emotional, spiritual, true authority killing chaos, and manipulative guilt. I cannot stand it. It makes people feel like second class Christians when they don't get the prophecies.

So, there. I have vented. I appreciate much of what these guys do in service to the Lord Jesus. I have read their books, and I have profited by them. But, I confess that these voices are not the ones I'd like to dominate the evangelical future because I think Driscoll calling out Chan here is, and I hate to use a cliche, the pot calling the kettle black.

Phil (the Doulos) said...

As a member/teaching elder in a church in rural Nebraska like some of you have referred to, I can affirm that there are many churches in this area that need solid, Biblical pastoring to revitalize them with the Word. Not sure what this has to do with Chan, etc but just wanted to say that.

Oh and, Go Big Red...

Casey said...

And FWIW, Challies did link to your initial assessment of Chan's decision. I thought he had, so I looked for it, and it was here:

http://www.challies.com/a-la-carte/a-la-carte-427-1

I especially enjoyed the commenter calling your post the most appalling thing he's ever read on the internet. Good times!

Robert said...

I'm not talking about abandonment...I am talking about having a justifiable reason for leaving the commitment he made to the church. He isn't being honest about it and he should be in order to justify leaving the commitment he has to the flock. And it should be the same for members. People shouldn't just be hopping from church to church on a whim (which is a HUGE anough problem already) and the same should be true for leaders.

I have a hard time separating the issues here because to me, if Chan is really being dishonest, then he isn't taking his commitment to his church seriously at all. He should realize that when he stands up in front of his church and makes an anouncement about leaving, that it has the same effect as him telling each member individually why he is leaving.

If I was unclear before, I'm sorry. I just think that commitments in the church are lax enough as it is without somebody saying they were "called by God" to leave his flock and go somewhere else. Especially when he has these pet projects "calling" him away from his local church.

witness said...

Phil can you email me so we can talk about some of those churches in your area?

ralph.d.kyle at us.army.mil

Sorry Dan.

Chuck said...

Yeah, that was bad. I mean...bad. I do remember Challies' link though- I'm pretty certain you and he would be on the same wavelength on this issue. You and Justin otoh...



Phil the Doulos-

Go Big Red indeed! I would love to live and work at a church in NE. Lived near Omaha as a kid and loved it. Folks down hear near Houston hate our big flag. :)

DJP said...

Oh... I thought I was "big red."

Stefan said...

Big Red?

Who knew there were Cornell fans in Nebraska?

Trevor said...

Why is there such a grumpy tone in some of these comments?

Now, I can't quote from the Chan video at length, but I did watch it twice...and I think there is some un-1 Cor. 13-kindness in these comments.

Don't think me to be a Francis chan fanboy BTW...I find myself heartily agreeing with Dan on these GTMS-type issues. I do find some comments judging (in a poor manner).