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I had a conversation with a dear sister-friend and colleague, a short time ago, which turned out to be a ministry session for my benefit. Rev. Terri Steed exhorted me to be true to myself and to the ways that God uses me in ministry. It may seem self-evident that I should do that, but self-evident is not always the same thing as easy.
There are certain kinds of jobs, professions, and vocations in which one is naturally exposed to scrutiny and criticism on a larger scale than just an immediate supervisor or close co-workers. In any such situation, the only certain thing is that you can’t please all of the people any of the time. At least, it seems that way. Different people will always have different opinions, approaches, and preferences which means that if your performance is being observed by more than a handful of people, you can bet on somebody taking exception with virtually everything you do.
|Pastor Marilyn returns to the front of the Sanctuary after the affirming vote of the Congregation on Sunday, September 8, 2013. (Lisa texts the good news to a friend as the church erupts in cheers.)|
If you read this blog, you may already know that Imani held a congregational meeting, September 8th, during which the congregation elected me to be Imani’s Senior Pastor. It was a wonderful confirmation of my feeling of being called to this church. I am thrilled to accept this new assignment and step fully into my role as servant-leader of this community of faith!
I want to take this opportunity to express my deep gratitude to all of the members and friends of Imani for the warm welcome that you have given me since my return to NC. It has been great to re-connect with old friends. It has been equally gratifying to experience how open and receptive people whom I had not known before have been to me and to my ministry. I am grateful to have the blessings of both of Imani’s previous pastors - Rev. Phil Matthews and Imani’s Founder and first pastor, Rev. Wanda Floyd. I cannot imagine a smoother, more natural transition!