This is an article I lifted from Peter Lublink's blog.
LARK NEWS —
“Every week he confesses another personal weakness,” says one member. “You get twitchy wondering what’s next.”
The personal confession streak started after Pastor Greg Ott attended a pastors conference in
“That sounded great until we realized it meant he would dump his dirty laundry on us every Sunday,” says one church member.
In the rhythm of his sermon, Ott’s confession usually comes a third of the way through, his people say. On a recent Sunday morning the congregation seemed to collectively cringe as he stepped around the pulpit and said, “Let me be real transparent with you …”
“I brace myself until he spits it out,” says Jocelyn Garnet. “It makes for a tense service.”
One week Ott admitted he was sometimes tempted to claim Starbucks food purchases as ministry-related tax deductions. Another time he said he “struggled with angry outbursts,” and occasionally “barked” at fast food drive-thru employees. He even said he sometimes walks “a little too slowly” by the
Lay leaders decided to broach the matter with Ott because the church was getting a reputation as the home of the “TMI pastor,” (short for “too much information”).
Ott says he just wants to be real with his people.
“I struggle like they do,” he says. “It’s okay for them to know that.”
But many in his church disagree.
“I don’t stand in the foyer and announce my weekly failings,” says Robert Walker, 79. “I want to be uplifted at church. One hopes the pastor would lead by good example, not regale us with his peccadilloes.”
Honesty? Is there such thing as TMI?
I have to say that, as a part time worship leader, one of the most valuable things I learned from one of my own worship mentors was the value of being honest behind the mic. I was very uncomfortable with it at first. Jeff would get up there and share that his pride was out of control and that he was really focussed on looking cool that morning. And I would think, "oh mean Jeff, didn't anybody ever teach you that you're supposed to keep the congregation in the dark about those things?" But then I would watch as, not only Jeff's own struggle with sin would slip off of his shoulders, but as other people in the audience would let go of their own struggles and just worship.
I hope this pastor sticks to his guns. This sounds like an important lesson his church needs to learn. God bless him for being willing to stick his neck out to teach it to them.