By Kenneth Justice
~In the last couple years I have been cussed out by three different Protestant pastors on four different occasions; one of the pastors apparently had more expletives he didn’t use the first time and he needed a second go-around to cuss me 0ut…..
Oddly enough, in each of those instances I didn’t cuss…..pretty good if you ask me…but don’t get me wrong, I’m definitely not a stranger to using salty language!
Without getting lost in the murky details of protestant preachers who have hurled the F-Bomb at me….suffice to say I have found myself in situations that were uncomfortable for the cussing pastors; in one particular occasion I found a church leader with his pants down…..and not with his wife
More often than not when we cuss someone out it is usually because we feel insecure;
We feel insecure in relation to a co-worker or relative….
….or perhaps we feel insecure due to someone having knowledge about our clandestine affair which would lead to a church scandal <wink, wink>
Ultimately, ‘feeling insecure’ can lead us to some pretty dumb decisions…
I am a father…..and one of the things I’ve noticed in raising children is that as a parent you have two choices; you can choose to make your children feel insecure around you or you can choose to make them feel comfortable around you.
Many parents wear the cloak-of-all-knowingness; that is, they act like their children are dumb and that they are so much smarter and know everything about…well...everything!
If you want a sure fire way to make your kids resent you by the time they turn 15; then act like you know-it-all.
Don’t get me wrong here….of course a parent probably knows quite a bit more than their 8 year old kid….I’m not living in a world of delusion (although the pastors who enjoy cussing me out seem to think I do)…..
But, your kids are not going to stay kids forever….they will grow up…become adults and then what; do you want to have a relationship with them that is healthy or contentious?
There is a psychological phenomenon in the Western World in which many parents (especially fathers) do not want their children (especially their sons) to supersede them in knowledge and success; this usually occurs at the unconscious level but it is very real and sad……thus; it’s important for parents who act on this impulse to disparage their children just enough…in order to keep their children down….
Of course, that kind of parenting style SUCKS! But it is real and it occurs quite regularly…..
In the context of the church I have seen this occur rather frequently also; many priests, pastors, and church leaders wear the cloak-of-all-knowingness and act as though they are more important then their parishioners; these ministers place prominence on their bible memorization and theological acumen….and do you know who gets lost in the fray? The people in the church who are actually hurting, struggling, financially strapped, and more…..the minister cares more about spending 40 hours a week in his/her study glued to bible study rather than getting out of their cave and actually getting to know the real needs of his/her congregation.
You see, if you are a parent or priest….the people around you don’t care whether you know-it-all….they really don’t.
What really matters is whether you are willing to serve; as a parent I believe my greatest responsibility is to serve my children; when my children learn something new in school and come to tell me about it…I act surprised, I say, “Wow! That is cool”….
It’s my job to sense when my children are sad, when they need to be hugged and when they need me to take them out for a walk and get some fresh air…..
Its the same in a relationship; whether its your boyfriend, girlfriend, husband or wife; if you only look at the relationship as a way for you to get something rather than as a way for you to give something….then most likely you are headed for a breakup or at the very least you are headed for a long life of misery.
I don’t say to my children; “Oh…I already knew that” when they tell me something new they’ve learned
I don’t want my children to feel insecure when they are around me.
I do want my children to feel comfortable around me, I want them to feel comfortable to talk to me about anything
As for any other ministers, priests, or pastors who want to cuss me out;
Please form one line….no pushing please, you will each get your turn to cuss at me….
While you’re forming the line….I’ll be right back…I gotta grab a cup of coffee right now…..