So how much does burnout amongst clergy have to do with theological differences? Here is what I mean.
Today I attended a gathering of our local pastors. Each of us is from a different denomination. We get along well. We disagree on some theological stuff, I suppose. It rarely comes up. But when leaders from Roman Catholic, Salvation Army, Southern Baptists, Disciples of Christ and Nazarene churches get together...it is fair to assume that our denominational and theological templates don't match perfectly. We gather with a larger purpose, however, and it is a good thing.
Now one non-clergy person visited us...felt that God is asking him to get the churches together for a "revival." He is a good man. However, the kind of revival he would envision, and the one that others in the room might picture, would be completely different. So we smiled, nodded and moved-on.
But in our congregations, people have received their theological training from varying sources such as TBN, Christian "End of the World" horror novels and movies, their grandfathers, Oprah and even a smattering of proof-texts from scripture. And these people come from one of two camps: "What I believe is the absolute, undeniable, complete gospel truth;" or "What I believe is just one option amongst many...no one can know the complete truth."
And as you read the above paragraphs, you fit into something close to one of the two camps just listed. How can we get along, when there are such emotionally powerful biases in our midst?
And when pastors lead on Sunday mornings, already feeling they are "constantly on trial," how can they stand anywhere with any confidence? I'd say we either preach loud and hard line. Or we teach series of how to do life, that avoid these issues; or we hope people will never find out the deep truths we hold in our hearts.
So, if anyone is listening...what do you think?