being human.

29 Jul

Growing up, I put my pastors on a pedestal.  A very high one.  They all were amazing, infallible human beings.  Until they weren’t.  It was a long fall down when I realized they were each merely human.

At the first UU church I attended, I began to try to do the same, but my minister resisted all attempts to put her up there.  She was so darn HUMAN.  She knew her faults, she even claimed them.  She would laugh at bawdy jokes.  She even told me my father was attractive (ick!, no offense, Dad).  Not surprisingly, it was from her that I realized I could be a minister – that I didn’t have to be perfect afterall.

I think I follow this model in my ministry.  I hope I do, because if not, some of the members of my congregation would have seen me tumble quite far the other day…

I was sitting in an evening meeting, waiting for it to start.  It was my first day back from a month of study leave and vacation, and I had been at church all day.  Just before we started, my spouse poked his head in the door.  ???  What was he doing here?  He was not here for the meet…OH SHIT!

That last part, the “Oh shit!” part, burst from my mouth as a very, very loud expletive.  Everyone turned to look at me.  I jumped up.

I had forgotten to pick my daughter up at camp.

My spouse, bless his heart, was much more forgiving about it than I had been when he had done the same a few weeks earlier.  He just laughed and went to get her.  She was in a safe place, with safe people – and the pickup window was an hour so we weren’t even technically late…but still.

I am human.  I forget things – even things that perhaps I shouldn’t forget.  And I curse – sometimes louder than perhaps I should.  And that is just the tip of the iceberg.

That first UU minister – she taught me a lot.  And I learned more from her than I did from most of the ministers I grew up with.  She showed me that it was okay to be a minister and to be human.  Heck, she helped show me that it is okay just to be human and make mistakes.

Good thing, cause I sure make a lot of them.

Don’t we all?

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