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What Christmas Says to the Impatient Pastor

The Incarnation gives me permission to accept my slow progress.
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What Christmas Says to the Impatient Pastor
Image: Raw Pixel / CCO

For my entire life, I have been a "resolution" person. I am uncomfortable with things being open-ended, whether that’s in an argument or transformation in my own soul. If you’re a Meyers-Briggs aficionado, picture me with a big fat “J” in my temperament type.

But I've concluded there is faulty theology lurking behind my need for closure. At the root of my impatience is the mistaken sense that being in process inherently falls short of God’s will; that I am perpetually not measuring up.

Here’s how the graceless part of my mind works: If God is holy and perfect and if his desire for me is to be holy and perfect, how could anything less truly be his will? He wants more than my progress–he wants my completion. How can I be okay with continued struggles and suffering? How could he be the author of a slow process that allows sorrow and ungodliness to remain in and around me? Why not eliminate it outright? "Partial" translates to ...

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