Why does it seem impossible to truly repent before you really let go? I don’t know. But I’ve felt pressed for a while to apologize for the way I was. After reading the article, I Am Not Who I Was by Jake Ray, there are a few things I’d like to confess.
And now I am learning how to let go.
I Was The Backbone
I was one of the backbone volunteers of a ministry, with various degrees of involvement, for quite some time. I won’t bore you with the details, but everyone knew me as a champion of the cause. I believed in the vision. I believed God’s people were supposed to help the vision along and I did a lot of recruiting and training, both formal and informal.
I was sincere. I put in a lot of love. I did some good. But my noble motives of pleasing God and advancing His kingdom were mixed with selfish ambition for ministry success and misunderstandings of love. Maybe another time I will write about the successes, but there are plenty of voices already doing that. Allow me to write about everything else.
Dear volunteers, staff, friends, and Father God,
I’m sorry I treated you like part of a machine.
I’m sorry I looked at your talents as assets to rope into my cause.
I’m sorry I was too busy for a relationship with you. I’m sorry that what we had for a relationship was framed by ministry involvement.
I’m sorry for sitting with my eyes glued to my Bible when I could feel someone broken looking at me, looking for attention – looking for a friend.
I’m sorry for saying in my heart that “I’m busy with God, can’t you see?” As if God were selfish and busy like me. As if God were selfish with me. As if I am God’s precious commodity rationed out to the deserving.
When you told me you didn’t quite fit in, I’m sorry I responded by encouraging you to try harder instead of making room for you to be yourself.
When you asked me, “Am I doing it right?” and I saw fear in your eyes, I’m sorry I answered with a “yes” or “no” or “almost” instead of fearing for myself. I should have been appalled that this was your main question – “Am I doing it right?” – because something I did as a leader, some unspoken emphasis on being “right” put this fear in you.
There’s no right way to worship, at least not that can be judged and measured by a man. The small measure of anointing I have received is a gift, not a prize for “doing it right.”
There is no right way, at least not like I thought there was.
The right way is sincerity, humility, truth, transparency, and love, love, love, love… But my hands were tied, I’m sorry. I want to love you but please follow this rule and fill out this form first and I will love you according to policy.