I left the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship meeting in Charlotte convinced, if I wasn’t before, that I don’t really fit the typical mold of Baptist pastor.
For one thing, the questions I got most frequently were not questions about my work or my views on the future of the church or the state of things at Calvary. Oh, no, most folks had questions about my hairstyle and my glasses, confirming my suspicions that the way I look makes me kind of stick out like a sore thumb in that crowd. (There are, of course, also some small ideological and theological issues that tend to make me stick out as well, and about which I was curiously not queried, but I will save my comments on those for another post altogether.)
I’m afraid, though I am now safely back in the strange and decidedly nontraditionally Baptist world of Washington, DC, that my strange differentiation only continues and has, in fact, gotten worse because of my newest accessory: an older model black Honda Civic with super-dark tinted windows and a very snazzy foil windshield guard you prop up when the car is parked.
I can’t imagine how anyone would ever NOT know I am a Baptist pastor now that I am driving that fine vehicle.
I didn’t mean to come home from Charlotte with such a stunning ride, but the sad news of today is that my van (the very site of so many deep theological conversations with my children) has had to enter hospice care. I knew this was coming; I suspected things were not as they should be when I could barely hold the steering wheel it was shaking so hard when I accelerated above 50 mph . . . but what did I know? As previously established, I’m a pastor. (I swear I am! Really!)
Upon hearing this vague concern I’d been having about the van, my brother in law, who professionally works with cars, took the van for a spin. Very soon after I received a stern scolding and the keys to his über-cool vehicle they like to call “the go-kart.”
I tell you, I am, as ever, the picture of sophistication and class.
I can’t wait to drive to church tomorrow and park said vehicle in the Senior Pastor Parking ONLY space. I’ll place bets that nobody will guess it really IS me parking there, which, as you might be able to tell from the tone of this blog entry, gives me no end of satisfaction.
In fact, I would even devote the remainder of my evening searching my music collection for tunes with a heavy bass beat so that I could slide into the Senior Pastor Parking ONLY space hiding behind those tinted windows with appropriate musical accompaniment. And I really would do that, too, even though I am a pastor…
…except my new ride sports a gaping hole where a radio used to be.
Did I mention that I am too cool for words?