Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sadness.

I dreamed last night that my teeth were falling out.

It's actually a fairly frequently recurring dream I have - I'm not exactly sure why - but mostly seems to come when I'm feeling a little more stressed about something. I'll dream that my teeth are loose, and rotting with several cavities, and then they start to fall out. It's so realistic I can feel, in my mind, the soft spot left on the gum from having a missing tooth. I am always heartbroken and embarrassed in this dream and worried about how we are going to pay to have them fixed. When I awake, I'm constantly checking my teeth for any signs of actual decay. In reality, I have pretty good teeth - and thanks to two sets of braces - fairly straight ones.

I'm not sure why I wanted to write about it except to admit what's bothering me so much I have my teeth-falling-out dream.

Yesterday, Jeff appeared before our presbytery to try and be licensed to preach. This has been a a long time coming - we had some troubles when he first went before a committee, but then those were sort of dealt with and finally we were hopeful and excited that maybe he was finally going to be licensed, the first step towards ordination.

It was not to be. They voted against passing him - even though he did a great job, all because of an exception (or disagreement) he has with the Westminster Confession. There is one small part of it he doesn't agree with and unfortunately that one small issue happens to be a very big issue in the part of the country we live in.

We are feeling heartbroken - let down by the denomination we both have come to love and uncertain about our future and what to do from here. Jeff won't be able to continue preaching here. We are sad about what it means for our dear, sweet church we have come to love.

I was so proud of Jeff this morning. He preached (another) amazing sermon in spite of his own discouragement, and was still continuing to remind me and those around us with truth from the gospel - that God's plan is perfect, that he knows what is best both for us as a family and for our church. That to me is what makes him such a great pastor - that he can be such an encouragement even when he is sad and walking through such a dark time.

But he is good at remembering the reality. Even though it might feel like all hope is lost, like surely a mistake has been made, it's like the bad dream I had last night. The reality is that God is good. That nothing can happen to us except what passes through his hand. That his plans are to prosper us and not to harm us. And that He who did not spare his own son but gave him up for us all, how will he not, also along with him, graciously give us all things?

We just have to keep reminding ourselves to be awake to that reality.

8 comments:

The Howell family said...

I hate to hear that! That is the thing I dislike the most about the PCA is that it is too focused on "doctrine", for lack of a better word, and not as much on the Holy Spirit I think. But, you are right, God does have a good and perfect plan. I'll pray that He reminds you of this continually and for wisdom.

COmom said...

We looooooooove you both!! We are hurting a LOT too!!

Your hearts are soooooo good.

Dad and I look forward with you to the unfolding of God's good plan.

"All your sons will be taught by the Lord and great will be the prosperity of your sons". I'm again reminded to TRUST God with His good plan for you.

andrew said...

We also love you guys. We are sad with you and also feel like this is ridiculous - but we are glad to hear that you are remembering the truth through the hurt. I can't understand how this can be good in any way, but I do trust our Savior.

The Balls said...

wow, that is so unbelievable!!! clint was telling me how he saw you at barnes & noble and we were reminiscing of our small group...and were talking about how much we learned from jeff! man, i'm so sorry. i'm sure your church is heart broken too. we'll be praying for you!

Corrin said...

I am so sorry.

Aubrey said...

What is so frustrating and makes it harder to understand is that:
1. If we lived almost ANYWHERE else in the US, this would not be a big deal.

2. I feel like it's because Jeff takes the understanding of scripture very, very seriously. He won't just agree with the confession even though that would be easier. He has studied this issue A LOT and feels that his position is a better understanding of the scripture. Even though our denomination likes to say that we believe in Sola Scriptura, it's like some people really believe in Sola Scriptura et Confessione. Or something like that.

3. It's not like he's way out in left field on this issue, either. He has the same opinion as JOHN CALVIN as in the same Calvin who is the hero of pretty everyone reformed. And also in the same camp as D.A. Carson. An incredibly well known and respected (and published!!) theologian.

Sigh.

gretchen from lifenut said...

I am so sorry. He sounds like a man of great integrity who will not plow under a belief in the name of getting a job. In my book, this shows he is eminently qualified to lead a church and pastor people.

Elle said...

I am sorry to hear that... but I am also very proud of your husband for standing up for something he truly believes in... and although the modern day church likes to push this part of the gospels aside, Christ told his followers time and time again that we would receive what he received, we would be persecuted and and doubted and mocked, and often at the hands of those who say they believe. Hang in there, we are promised that no saint suffers for naught! :)