Hello, I'm Peter Gillotte.
This is my blog. I am new to blogging, and I'm not immediately sure how to start. So, instead of being awkward (which is already is), I'll treat this like an introduction. If you care to read, I will tell you a bit about myself, a bit about why I am writing this blog, and a maybe tell a joke.
See, awkward already.
Why am I blogging? Well, the obvious answer is that I have something to say. And I do think I have something to say, a lot of things to get off my chest. But I also am a pastor, and as many of my professors in Seminary told me, most pastors and seminarians are narcissistic (though I had professors that also made us narcoleptic.) A portion of this blog will be to give me a place to write some of my own thoughts, my own ideas (some more, shall we say, provocative than others), without needing to gush my narcissism and awkwardness all over a sermon, which has been my modus operandi in the past.
I will also be discussing, theoretically, a number of items that may be inappropriate for discussion in sermons. Some of this comes from personal experiences (one does find it difficult to draw sermon illustrations from a D&D game or Star Wars book, after all), books I will be reading, and discussing on this blog, conversations I have had, etc. Many many pastors use the "personal illustration" in their sermons. While this can be effective, I was recently struck by an article I read in Leadership Journal about the dangers of the personal illustration; particularly about what it can teach a congregation and where the weight of the church can fall. Church should be about Jesus, not the pastor, and coming to church and hearing about the pastor more than about Jesus is, well, problematic. More in this to come. If you are interested in listening to me or hearing what I have to say about things, you would be welcome to lurk or post as you desire.
I am also a church planter, looking to be planting a church in Kansas City soon, to where my family and I have recently moved. As I navigate this ecclesiological adventure, I will talk about The Field, the church we will be planting, giving updates on the process and eventually announcing events as they come to be. If you are interested in hearing more about The Field and this church plant, stay tuned, and you will be rewarded with information, as soon as information exists.
Finally, I will be using this blog to discuss some of my own ideas. As I said, I will be discussing here some of my own more provocative ideas, things I believe about Jesus and the church (church universal, not specific bodies of believers) and faith and sexuality and politics and architecture and cars and the environment and theology and leadership and philosophy and fasting and ethics and prophecy and the bible and manliness and beards (probably a lot about this one, lets be honest). Much of this, also, is inappropriate for the pulpit, but for different reasons.
(I may also eventually discuss why I like to do things in threes. Genetic preference for trinitarianism? Too much bad poetry written as a youth? Natural out pouring of being the youngest of three? Disdain for the number four?)
(See, I tried to be funny and ... awkward again. Lets keep moving.)
I will end, I think, with a joke, and post a bit about me on my next post (see, narcissistic -- I want a whole post just to talk about myself). Talking about myself, after all, will guarantee that I do actually post a second post.
So, deep under the ocean, there were two prawns by the name of Oswald and Christian who were very good friends. Being prawns, they spent a great deal eating whatever was smaller than them and avoiding being eaten by things bigger than them. (This is not unlike how we all spend a great deal of our lives, lets be honest.) Now, prawns are not large creatures, and while plankton is abundant, so are larger fish, particularly barracuda, at least in this neck of the seaweed.
One day, while swimming along and trying to avoid being seen, and thus eaten, Oswald and Christian come upon The Magic Cuttlefish. (Yes, magic cuttlefish. He's vaguely more benevolent little brother. Back off.) Having found The Magic Cuttlefish, Oswald and Christian are granted one wish between the two of them (see, only vaguely benevolent). Oswald, being the more outgoing (read: jerkwad) of the two of them, and tired of running his whole life, shouts (bubbles?) out "Magi Cuttlefish, I want to be a giant barracuda!" Magic Cuttlefish of course obliges and, poof (sputter?) Oswald is a giant barracuda. He is, of course, excited, but Chris is nowhere to be found (because, lets be frank, "aw hell a giant barracuda" produces a strong instinctual reaction in a prawn.)
Oswald goes off, swimming and eating and scaring and hunting and hiding (and a wee bit of running, as even a giant barracuda is shark food) and having himself a hellova time. After a while, as these stories always go, he begins to miss his friend. So he goes on a quest to find The Magic Cuttlefish. Having found him (a feat in itself) , he asks to be turned back into a prawn. Magic Cuttlefish obliges without much argument (because this joke is getting long and not very funny.) Oswald, back in his previous state, swims home to find his friend! Wee! However, he learns that Chris has locked himself up in his hole and refuses to eat and talk with anyone, as he misses his best friend so very much. Oswald goes to his hole and announces "Chris! Come out! It is me, Oswald, I want to come and play!" Chris, not being a dummy, yells back a very sad "No! You are a giant barracuda (and still a jerkwad!)!" To which Oswald responds "No no! I'm different now! I'm a prawn again, Christian!" /rimshot! (Or, perhaps, /facepalm)