When I met with Mac back in July, I expressed my concerns about my presence at BTUMC compromising Mac's pastoral authority/making things worse for him. He said he didn't see how that could happen. I then asked him if he wanted to set any boundaries on my involvement/actions for the rest of my time at BT, or give me any sort of guidance. He just said one thing, "think about what you would have wanted in your situation at SJ."
So, over the past few months, I've been praying about that, and I've done a few things. I wrote a letter to our District Superintendent, describing specific ways that I have seen God work through Mac at BT. I've tried to be a voice of reason during meetings, challenging people to step back and look at the big picture. I've had a few one-on-one conversations (both spontaneous and planned) with leaders in the church to hear their perspective and offer them mine. I would have welcomed any of these actions when I was at SJ.
However, you know what I would have wanted the most during my time at SJ?
To know that there was someone (besides Harry) in the congregation who cared more about me as a person than about the church. Who, if given the choice, would make a choice that would benefit me versus benefit the church. Who might be willing and able to offer a more neutral view on issues.
It is exceedingly rare for a pastor to have that sort of person in his or her congregation, probably even rarer for them to have such a person among their leadership.
I can be that person for Mac.
And I wonder if that's a huge part of the reason God has me here at BT during this season of my life and ministry.
What do you think?