I’ve been wrestling with how I come across on this blog.
Not so much my tone or the specific topics that I’ve been posting about.
What it boils down to is that I’m at this point a very public person. I’m the #1 google search for Andrew Seely.
I publicly share this blog address and my email. If you want to find me it’s not that hard.
I guess this has it’s advantages and it’s disadvantages. I guess at this point I’m lucky enough to be pretty far under the radar. Most of the readers of this blog, I can say I know personally and trust. I don’t feel like I need to hide anything. I never delete posts and I usually don’t think, “would it be ok to post this” before sitting down to write things.
The question that I’ve been struggling with is “am I too vulnerable?”
As I think about jobs and life and being someone who feels that this blog and my writing define a part of who I am, do I need to be more careful how I share my hopes, dreams, fears, insecurities, and the inner thoughts that I wrestle with, when it comes to faith and life?
I am inclined to argue no. I should be able to be as free and honest and open about all of that. My inclination comes from a deep sense of who God has created me to be and the sense of humbleness I strive towards is one that allows people to see every facet of who I am. The good, the bad the ugly, the silly, the darkness that sometimes feels overwhelming.
As I think about becoming a pastor in the future, it is one of my values that I am able to be seen as a person who is more like the people I serve and less as someone who is valued and placed (either selfishly or by others) on some sort of a pedestal, as some pastors are. I have come to witness that the further up one is placed the longer the fall is. Here’s the thing, I am going to fall, publicly, in one way or another, it’s not that I hope not to. It’s that I am fully expecting to, so why allow myself in any capacity to be placed in a position where I am to fall from the graces of the people I serve.
I know that God forgives and extends grace. Though I hope to convey to those I serve that I am well aware of this and experience it as much if not more than them.
It is my hope, by becoming vulnerable and naked in front of others that they will see the places in my life where I have nothing left to do but to accept the grace that is continually offered to me.
I guess the thing I fear is that this makes me seem weak. Or at times unfit to lead. Though as I read and understand scripture, this is what leaders are called to do. Have we been so suckered into an “american christianity” that believes that pastors and leaders are supposed to be superhuman and superdevine? So much that when they even slightly falter, we lose hope in them because they fail to meet up to human standards instead of heavenly ones?
I so deeply desire to break down human expectations for what I am “supposed to be” before they are even placed on me.
I hope that through my openness that those who surround me can do a few things for me, one being that they know my struggles, that that are more aware of the things that they can be praying for me for and challenging me towards. I hope that through my vulnerability it will create connecting points for them to relate their struggles to mine. And mine to theirs. Our struggles are usually not unique to our own situation, and in many ways that is why the body of christ exists, to support and learn from one another. I hope that it draws us closer together, sharing in love and grace.
Am I completely off base here? Should I be more guarded with how I present my life? Especially in light of wanting a job in ministry and being a future leader of the church? Do you enjoy my candor and willingness to share?
I guess it comes down to this is who I am. Accept me. All of me. Just as I know God accepts me and has specifically created me to be.
It is my hope and prayer that others will extend grace to me, flaws and all, as I find comfort in know that God’s grace cannot be escaped.
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