15 Apr A JOURNEY to New York …
My body tells me the TRIP started around 3:15 this morning when I rolled out of bed after a whopping 3 hours of sleep. However, the JOURNEY to New York … Queens specifically … began a couple years back.
My process of recovery from burnout led me to study the concept of family systems theory, both personal and corporate. Simply put, we are all put together with a complex set of beliefs, values, and ways of doing life. For any of us, those things come primarily from our “family of origin”, the family we were raised in.
A little known “Kuzmaism” … I have always been intrigued by mafia stories. I’m no expert historian on mob life; I’ve just always been interested. I think some of that is because of a deeper interest that has come to light regarding this stuff on family systems theory.
Much study has been done in the last few decades about how systems theory applies to the life of organizations, including churches. My quest toward understanding this truth led me to a couple of very good books. One of them is The Emotionally Healthy Church, authored by Peter Scazzero, Pastor of New Life Fellowship in Queens, New York.
I vividly remember reading the first few pages and thinking, “This guy is writing my story!” More to come in the next couple of days regarding all that.
For now, suffice this first post to say that the reason I am in Queens right now is to attend a conference on Saturday called “Developing Leaders in The Emotionally Healthy Church” . I have asked the Lord these last years to help me put feet to what I am learning regarding how all this impacts our church life. I believe He is showing the way and the potential resources for learning what it takes to be an emotionally healthy church. I, as one pastor, believe it may be a way toward healing that is more greatly needed than we imagine.
Our TRIP went well … for starters, the Starbucks at LAX was right at our departing gate. Just doesn’t get much better than that. A delightful gate attendant assigned us to a row of three seats with one empty for some space … providing for some creature comfort and a little helpful shut eye.
Our hotel shuttle driver was truly a New Yorker who skillfully guided us through some tough freeways and streets, all the while keeping a van filled with mostly Irish family members in town for a wedding talking and laughing. To top it all off, we ate at an Argentinian Steak House. In Argentina, they eat steak and pasta together – giving me the perfect way to begin such an anticipated trip – steak, fettucine with tomato sauce, and mafioso music playing in the background.
More to come …