If you want to see something that is truly a dichotomy, look at my Facebook feed. Being an artist and a minister will do that. The thing is I really care about all of these people, but at times it feels like I’m being drawn and quartered, but most of the time, it just feels like something I grew quite used to in my teenage years. I don’t really fit in anywhere. On one hand I see the liberal Christians I know, lauding our churches being shut down due to COVID as a badge of honor and those who want to open as if they are committing an act of violence. All I can say is I miss my people. I’m doing online services and trying my best to minister, but my most at risk people from COVID are the ones I can do the least for. I can’t visit, and the best I can deliver for them is a phone call and, as a worship experience, cobbling my sermon notes together into a letter they can read. That breaks my heart.

Then on the other side, the more conservative folks are posting things. like this quote from Steven Lawson which stated “Stop with the secular wisdom from the pulpit. Cancel the entertainment in the church. Fire the drama team. Get rid of the schtick. Unplug the colored lights. Put the pulpit in the center of the building. Stand up like a man, open the Bible, lift it up, let it out and let it fly.” Now two things, first of all I’ve never heard Mr. Lawson, and I know nothing about him. Secondly, I agree with some of what he said here, but when he speaks to firing the drama team, I just want to cringe. Now before we go any further, when it comes to God’s Word, I am pretty conservative. I believe the Bible is inerrant and that unless otherwise noted, the Bible says what it means and means what it says. Mr. Lawson’s approach will work just fine in a room full of established believers. The problem is a church should not necessarily ever be full of established believers. We should be constantly reaching beyond the walls and people need to be met where they are. Further, one day I will stand before God to give an account. What will I say when God asks me why He gave me a whole bunch of talented people that could have been used mightily to reach those people?

Now to be clear, I will never hold a church service where God’s Word is not preached, ever, but part of my responsibility is to find the gifted and help them to use their gifts to serve the Lord. After all, I am a walking illustration of how that works. I was dwelling on these thoughts as I was walking this morning and I started to pray. I was taken to an unusual place, to my favorite band from my teenage years, long before I was a believer. The band is Rush. I loved that band. When it seemed everyone else was trying to feed me a diet of sex, drugs and rock and roll, Rush was giving me classic literature, complex stories, Greek mythology and more. The song I was led to was their epic, full side of an album song Hemispheres. The opening lyrics say, “When our weary world was young, The struggle of the ancients first began.The gods of Love and Reason, Sought alone to rule the fate of Man.” Yes it’s mythology. Yes, I only believe in one God and yet, this is the battle—science vs. faith, heart vs. mind. What people tend to ignore is we are all led by both. The object of my faith is the Creator of science, and I am commanded to love Him with all my heart, soul and mind. He is the Lord of both heart and mind. He is Creator. He is the greatest theologian and the greatest artist. To love Him is to love all of Him. He is Lord of heart and soul and mind. Why should I put Him in a box?

Maybe that’s why I was drawn to the song this morning. Now it’s not a Christian song by any stretch of the imagination. What it is, is an amazing work of art. The song expresses the battle between heart and mind. It shows how when one is emphasized over the other, both sides are weakened. In the song, there is a person in the midst of this battle who sees something better— balance. Heart and mind together, and the gods of Olympus promote him to being Cygnus, the god of balance. Now I know I titled this piece Am I Cygnus? Let me first off state, that I have no desire to be a god, nor do I have any illusions toward that, but what if God has given me the gifts and talents and, dare I say, passions He has given to, in some small way, bring balance? And what if I’m not alone. What if there are a lot of us out here, who don’t always fit, but who have a calling to minister from both heart and mind? What if we refuse to be either/or, but to proclaim the truth of the unchanging Gospel with all of our gifts and talents? What if that’s why we don’t fit?

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