Are You Making Progress on the Issues that You Care About?

Clouds in northeastern Kansas
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One of the Kansas Leadership Center’s Civic Leadership Principles is:

Our own defaults, how we would usually or unconsciously react or intervene in a situation, can be significant barriers to making progress on the issues we care about.

There is a lot to be said for this principle as well as the others in the list, but today I wanted to focus on the final part of the sentence – “making progress on the issues that we care about.” I have realized that this is universally applicable.

Everyone wants to make progress on the issues that they care about.

It may be:

  • Foster children in the community
  • A new worship service
  • Development of one’s children
  • Creating an effective committee structure
  • Living into God‘s dream for one’s life
  • Availability of clean drinking water
What issues do you care about and are you making progress on them?

Father’s Day 2011

My Father and Son

Father’s Day is celebrated across the globe to honor fathers and celebrate fatherhood. This is the Father’s Day for me when I celebrate the reality of being a father myself. Our son is a great gift and it is fantastic to celebrate with him.

In addition to this being my first Father’s Day as a father, I want to honor my own Father, Mark Conard. I am proud of him and appreciate the care and love that he has for our entire family. Thanks for being a great dad!

What is proper church attire?

I received the following email from a Resurrection attender last month. I have included my response below and some additional thoughts. They have each been edited for anonymity.

Email Received:
Has Pastor Adam ever broached the subject with the congregation on appropriate attire when attending church? I imagine that this is a rather sticky subject, to say the least. When I was leaving church yesterday, I noticed two teenage girls walking out in front of me. Even though it was cold outside one of these girls had on extremely – and I mean extremely – short shorts that bordered on vulgar. WHERE ARE THE PARENTS???!!! I hope you don’t think I’m a prude because I try to be open-minded and accepting of other people……as I think about it, though, maybe that’s why teenagers wear clothing that’s inappropriate for the occasion because we’ve all tried to be so accepting. Go figure.

My response:
Thanks for your email. To my knowledge, Adam has not talked publicly about public attire while I have been here at Resurrection. I understand your concern. I agree that some clothing may be less appropriate for public. In this and other issues, I think that there is a balance between accepting people where they are and holding them accountable. My hope is that as a congregation we are holding each other most accountable to their journey of knowing, loving and serving God toward becoming a deeply committed Christian. How this journey applies to clothing style, as you witnessed, is interpreted differently by different persons.

Further Thoughts:
I have found that the question of attire is not limited to teenagers or those for whom parents may still feel responsible. I feel that the question of the interaction between parent and student is another issue.

As I have thought more about what is appropriate to wear to church, I am not too excited about having a dress code for what is allowed and what is not allowed from someone that is a part of the worshipping congregation. I think that one’s standards for dress while worshipping should not be less than standards for dress in any other public space. Whether they should be higher or different in some way is an open question for me.

What do you think?