Soul Chocolate

giving chocolate to others is an intimate form of communication, a sharing of deep, dark secrets…

“Indiscretions” by Church Leadership (Pt 2) May 28, 2010

Filed under: 100% Cocoa — beautynobility @ 9:11 am

So yesterday, the first entry, was an overview. Almost a way to establish my “credibility” in commenting on this topic.  Today, I’d like to go in a little more on the responsibility of leadership.  For a scriptural base on where I’m coming from see James 3:1, 1 Timothy 3:1-13; Jeremiah 50:6; Ezekiel 34:1-16; Mark 14:27.

Let’s get a basic out of the way: all sin is sin.  Nothing is better or worse than the other, a truth we need to confront with more than lip service in the body of Christ.  Fornication is not better than homosexuality, but worse than lying.  Killing is not worse than stealing, but better than gossip.  It’s all sin in God’s eyes, all in need of the mercy of the cross.  All come from a root of sin, a place that says we are better than God, and we must acknowledge our need for Him.  So none of us is in a place to condemn, because we all have sin of which we need to repent.  However (and this I feel very strongly about), we do have a responsibility, even a duty, to other believers to bring the convicting word of God, through grace, that opens our eyes to the sin in our particular lives.  We must speak the truth in love, even when the truth is hard.  But this is another post.

So with that as a base, I also believe that there are some sins, and some people, that are more detrimental to the body of Christ.  Re-read that.  There are some sins that tear apart the Body more easily, and tear down the image of Christ to non-believers.  I believe that sexual sins, particularly those involving adultery, are high on that list.  Why?  Because I think some behaviours are viewed as basic sins and, in the (paraphrased) words of Paul, not tolerated even among non-believers.  Look at the wave of criticism against men like Tiger, John Edwards, Kobe, and Shaq.  None of these men are Christian leaders, but all have been caught in sexual indiscretion and were derided for their moral failings.  How much higher a standard should be held for Christian leaders?  Should we not have expected them to have learned to withstand these temptations?  When we discover that these leaders have fallen in areas that we believe they should have conquered, then we question their leadership, their walk with Christ, even all they have said.

Furthermore, because they are leaders, they have a greater impact on the perception of Christ.  Yes, we all have an impact, but let’s be real.  What the President/Prime Minister says about government has a greater, and more widespread impact than what I say.  This holds true in the Christian world.  What a pastor, or someone else of leadership, says about Christ has a more widespread and greater impact than what I say.  This is because we assume there is a level they have achieved before reaching that level of leadership.  We believe they have met certain criteria: a certain education, a disciplined and principled walk with Christ, a life that can withstand scrutiny.  We don’t allow just anyone to take leadership of our schools, companies, or countries – and we hold our Christian leaders to a same or greater standard.  This is why the Bible says that we should not aspire to be leaders – the standard, the weight, the responsibility is great.  So when they say or do something, based on this expectation of a proven life, we give it great weight.  And when these great leaders fall, particularly in such a basic way, we feel the pain all the more deeply.

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dear future husband… May 27, 2010

Filed under: white chocolate — beautynobility @ 2:20 pm

Hey babe!

you can show me your face...i promise

I really have no idea what you look like. I know what I WANT you to look like but, I’m becoming okay with the fact that you may not be 6’5, black, well-built, and moderately good looking…seriously. But lately, I’ve been thinking more about the issue of our “looks” and “standards.” By the time we meet this may be ancient history or recent news, but lately there’s been an outbreak of news on the plight of the single black female.  It’s focused around her high expectations and why she should settle. While I truly and fully call bull on those sentiments, the stories have gotten me thinking about what’s most important about you. How much do I really care about what you look like? I mean, yeah, I want fabulous pictures, but truly, what does it matter? Sure, I want our  kids to be gorgeous,  but come on, that’s a given – I’m mommy. (to which you will be nodding enthusiastically).

Someone, a random blogger, newsperson, or spokesperson, made a couple of points I found really interesting: 1. by having such a well-documented and notoriously stringent fairly known standard, I may be impacting your self-esteem in our relationship.  I started to cry bull on this, then I had to stop and think. How would I feel if your dream girl was 5’4″ size 3, superquiet, and docile? I mean, clearly you’ll have me so it’s a win for you, but yeah…that could hurt, because that’s definitely not me.  Not by a long shot. Never gonna happen. Not physiologically possible. You get the point. I suppose part of me will always see that girl and wonder if you’d prefer her.  So I don’t cry bull on this point, because I can see how you could have a problem if you’re 6’0 and faced with your taller brethren. Hmmm…

2. By looking for “that,” I may be looking past you.  I may be delaying us because you know that’s what/who I want.  I definitely do NOT want to do that.  It is well-known throughout the world to my small circle that I am anxiously awaiting your arrival ready when you are.

So yes, love. I’m not only okay with you, however you may look, but I love how you look. Because you were made for me. God knew when He created you that I would find you wildly attractive…and I do.

Smoooches,

Cha

 

“Indiscretions” by Church Leadership (Pt 1)

Filed under: 100% Cocoa — beautynobility @ 1:29 pm

Within the past few weeks, I’ve been learned of several (sexual) indiscretions within leadership in the body.  Singers, musicians, pastors, all of whom were are well-respected by believers and non-believers alike.  This has disturbed me on multiple levels, and led to several discussions within my circle of friends.  We’ve discussed the indiscretions themselves, the leaders, our personal heartache over it, and, most frequently, the appropriate response.  This last point, the appropriate response, has been the most controversial.  Some believe that the appropriate response is always for the minister to step down from their position, as a sign of repentance to both God and their followers.  Others felt that, while stepping down may be appropriate at times, it isn’t a universally correct response because it does not speak to the condition of the heart.  Instead, steps should be taken in accountability, and based on the repentance in the person’s heart, they should step down from ministry for a time.  Still more felt that the minister should always make a public apology, acknowledging the wrong.  Again, others thought the “always” was problematic – this should be based on when the indiscretion occurred, when repentance occurred, etc.  Others felt that this was intensely personal, and need not be discussed publicly, at any point.

I’ve found myself conflicted on what the response should be.  I’ve been connected with the church world for a long time -26 years, to be exact.  I am well acquainted with the confusion felt by the youth group member who sat under a teaching of sexual purity, and heard her youth leader preach on “fleeing sexual immorality like Joseph,” only to have it announced 1 month later that the very same youth leader and his girlfriend were expecting a baby.  I know what’s like to watch fellow choir members get pregnant, and have everyone wondering who was next.  I’ve had church members come to me and admonish me not to be like the other PKs (pastor’s kids to the uninitiated), and not have children in my teens.  I’ve watched my own family come apart because of (alleged) sexual indiscretions (among other reasons).  And in all of these, I’ve seen varied responses.  Some were forced to step down from their positions and others to make public apologies.  Some were left alone, treated as if nothing had happened, leaving us to think that if we ignored the protruding belly long enough, the pregnancy would disappear.

Having lived these responses, as a congregation member, friend, and daughter, I know what my personal response is, and how I feel about each circumstance.  I can’t say what the prescribed course of action should be, but I can proffer my opinion, based on my interpretation of what the Bible says.

So, over the next few days, I’ll offer my humble opinion and perspective on all this.  Please note: this is MY humble and personal opinion and perspective.  This is not an indictment, commandment; in no way do I claim to have had a new revelation from God.  Just saying.

 

Forgive me chocolatiers…

Filed under: Uncategorized — beautynobility @ 12:46 pm

…for I have sinned. It has been 2 months and 6 days since my last confessional blog.(#noCatholic)

Okay, so that opening was a little snarky. And perhaps offensive to my Catholic brothers and sisters.  (Sincere and deep apologies if so.) But seriously, I recognize that it’s been way too long since my last post.  I could (and will) blame school.  The last two months of 1L were ridiculously busy, as I was trying not to let exams sneak up on me.  There were competitions, outlines, and meetings to keep up with.  I recognize just how busy life gets, and see fully my lack of discipline in regards to this blog.

And, I see just how much of an impact lack of discipline has.  The constipation that I had eradicated snuck back up on me (okay, I’m going to stop that analogy right there).  And I know that I need to focus on building discipline here, for it can only help me in other areas.

I will say, however, that I began several posts during those busy times.  So expect a dearth of posts over the next couple weeks.  I’m going to be addressing my future husband (and those that say he is a mythical creature), Leviticus, humility,  indiscretions by church leadership, friendship, and more. I know, how much more exciting could life be?!?!

So grab your favourite chocolate, a glass of wine (if that’s up your alley), find a comfy chair, and settle in.