SGM Humor Moment – The Most Interesting Apostle…

Things with SGM are so ridiculous, it’s getting beyond absurd – it’s now ludicrous.   So I’m kicking off a new series of occasional posts entitled – SGM Humor Moment.  I wish I have enough material to do a post every week but I’m neither that funny or prolific.   However, we need to take a break from this serious business of SGM reform from time to time so here’s the first (and possibly last)

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SGM Humor Moment

[tagline: We need learn to laugh at ourselves, because everyone else is]

Since SGM is making a new start in Louisville, what’s needed for this exciting new chapter is a brand new commercial for SGM featuring CJ Mahaney.

Please cue the appropriate music from the Dos Equis commercial.

“He has recanted from confessions he has yet to make”

“His polity committees are stacked for success”

“He makes temporary Presidencies last forever”

“He is the Most Interesting Apostle in the World”

[Cut to CJM – looking into camera] :  “I don’t often switch churches, but when I do, I prefer to leave town altogether…Stay humble, my friends”

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What do you think?

Note to SGM/CJ boosters: please no hate mail – I don’t have personal beef with the man – just having some fun here.  Cheers!

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25 thoughts on “SGM Humor Moment – The Most Interesting Apostle…

  1. “Stay humble, my friends” – that was really funny!

    Interesting that there hasn’t been a single post on Our Back Pages since early May, it would appear the “open” discussion of apostolic ministry by Phil Sasser and sons has been silenced. They were posting at a pretty rapid rate for a while there, but maybe they are so busy supporting the polity committee that they don’t have time to post anything now?

  2. Disillusioned, you could be right. Some of the pastors who have submitted polity position papers will be traveling to Louisville to present/discuss their papers with the board next week. I’m guessing this week is being spent reading up on the submissions in advance.

    SGMNation – Thanks for the laugh! And for this thoughtful blog. I appreciate and echo your desire for reform.

  3. Hi sgmnation –
    I’m responding the part of the post that says, “What do you think?”

    I know it’s your blog and all, but I think that you may be losing a lot of readers with this. Now I realize that a large number of followers is not your goal here, but what I do feel you may be trying to accomplish is to have a blog where people will feel comfortable reading here. The people I’m referring to may not have any other source for “critical thinking” about SGM other than your blog. These people are shying away from other blogs because of personal attacks and snarky language. While of course, everyone is entitled to have fun, it seems like this is directed towards a person. When I talk to my husband about SGM, he asks me if I would be willing to share the same things with them face to face. I can honestly say that I would. While I feel that everything else you’ve shared on this blog you would tell them face to face, I’m not sure you would read this to CJ face to face. And even if you would, I guess it seems more like mocking than fun to me.

    Thanks for asking, and thanks for listening to my point of view.

    • Ruth – thank you for your comment. It’s true that garnering a large following isn”t my goal but I do care about your comment. I truly did not mean for this post to be offensive in any way. I’d like to think that on the odd occasion we will be able to step back and laugh at the absurdity of all of this.

      However, since you make some wonderful points, this will be the last SGM Humor post – a shame too since I have some really good Brent “knock knock jokes” 🙂 Thanks!

      • sgmNation. Ruth makes a good point. Your blog is excellent. Thanks for following her suggestion.

      • Thanks, WhatToDo. It was a post done in jest and fun – but based on Ruth’s comment, I know it’s a distraction and unhelpful to some.

  4. Humor promotes humility – isn’t that what CJ always indicated? Someone who wouldn’t be mocked, must not be very humble… And while some of the mockery might have gone too far in SGM circles, he had a point – if you can’t laugh at yourself, you probably take yourself (or your leaders, or your movement) too seriously.

    • Well, you have a point there EM. To be clear to all concerned – The goal wasn’t to “mock” CJ. In fact, mock is far too strong a word – it’s more like poking fun, done in the spirit at laughing at the SGM mess, the actors concerned, etc… Also, it’s not just targeted at CJ even though I started with him – in hindsight, that may have been a mistake.

      For instance, I have a top 10 list – Letterman style – “Top 10 things you didn’t know about Brent D”:
      #10 – Brent’s idea of a short article? War & Peace
      (Now you’ll have to guess the other 9)

      I’m sorry for the distraction – some of you found it funny, some not so much – I simply wanted to lighten things a little.
      Thanks for your understanding and rest assured, I’ll be banning SGM humor from now on 🙂

      • Yeah – “mock” is too strong, probably… Don’t end the humor, please 🙂 l want the rest of the top ten list!

      • EM – not all the way through to the 10 – got another 3-4 that I need to flesh out. But I’m glad my quirky humor has piqued your interest. :-). If I get it wrapped up, I’ll email you

      • EMSDG — I think you’ve made a great point about CJ using humor to promote humility. Sadly, people who don’t see things about themselves that everyone else can see clearly aren’t going to laugh. SGMN — And yes, mock is a strong word. I didn’t take the time to think of a different word. I was just thinking of how I tell my kids if they are having a good time with some joke and they are laughing and the other person isn’t then they’re probably being unkind. (Or, the other person is being over-sensitive.)
        In this case, my point is mostly that I want to be able to recommend this blog to the most people possible and if it becomes a place for poking fun at SGM (even if it’s all true), then I can’t recommend it to certain people who I know would be instantly turned off, rather than reading on to be enlightened.

  5. I enjoyed the humor; and as a former SGM Pastor, I personally believe this fits well with C.J.’s own humor. He never misses a beat poking a little fun when he gets a chance (just ask all of us who are BigTen fans….).

    • JL – thanks, I thought most would enjoy the humor and in a strange way, I kind of expect that CJ, perhaps at a different point in time would laugh at it too! I mean among the many things that are screwed up about SGM, are some good attributes and I think our ability to laugh at ourselves is one.

  6. sgmNation. I think many of us can appreciate humor and I for one have enjoyed CJ’s over the many years. I to agree that CJ might laugh as well. My comments earlier were directed not so much about issues of humor but more so about your highlighting it on your blog. As we are all aware other blogs have been posting humorous posts. As I read those blogs I need to fish through the noise on their blogs to the meat of the conversation. I have found your blog to be thoughtful, reflective and well worth the time to read your commentary on SGM. If you start to fill it with extraneous items and try to outwit others humor on the situation, I for one will only start to check this blog on occasion. To sgmNation and all, sorry to be such a party pooper.

    • WhatToDo – no apologies needed. Your point of view is valid and helpful. I will take into account and I’m grateful that this blog has received your high regard

  7. There is word that SGM national is regarding the papers being presented to their polity committee this week as “confidential” – not to be shared outside of the pastoral echelon. I am no longer an SGM member but if I were, I would ask to see any paper presented by the leadership of my church. It would speak volumes if I were refused. As a member of the body of Christ and a former SGM church member, I am interested in the polity discussion that is going on and I find it odd that it would be secretive. Why can it not be open? Why can not the members of churches at least – or even the wider body – be allowed to benefit from the research these pastors are doing on polity?

    • 100% agree! All of the papers should be made available to the wider SGM network of churches, or better yet, be made public! I cannot imagine any legitimate reason to keep these under wraps. I would also be very interested to read the other papers and get an idea of how the wind is blowing outside of our local body. Our (SGM) pastor sent the church a summary of his paper in a recent newsletter. The full text of his paper is available on our member website, and he encouraged everyone who is interested to read it. There is a strong effort locally to make this polity process as transparent as possible, and to elicit input from the congregation along the way.

    • Fully agree and any pastor worth his salt would gladly share it with those he’s entrusted to lead. SGM is old school, secretive and it reflects a low view of Christ as head over the church

      • Here’s an appeal to the SGM pastors reading here: can anyone please defend the position of keeping these polity papers confidential? I ask this not in an effort to be snarky or combative; it’s just that I can’t imagine any good reason for the secrecy, and if there IS a good reason, I’d love to hear it and be the wiser for it. Thanks.

  8. Apologies for coming late to this thread, but I would agree with Ruth’s comment posted earlier. This blog was a godsend to me because it was a place to where I could direct people who would never go to the main SGM blogs. People who know how to chew the meat but spit out the bones can read at those blogs, which provide — along with some excellent analysis — plenty of digs, jokes and a fair dose of (IMO) general nastiness. Your blog, on the other hand, has discussed areas of concern in a sober but kind way. I can’t think of another information source where that is the case.

    If your blog becomes a retread of Survivors-style snarkiness, then where can the non-reformer sheep go to get educated on the issues facing Sovereign Grace churches? This humor post is not worth the price of depriving the status-quo-loyalists of a safe place to read and become informed.

    Would you be willing to take it down?

    Thanks for considering.

    • SovGrace Wendy – thanks for your comment – it’s sincerely appreciated. Here’s my point of view and with this comment, I think I will have beat the proverbial dead horse absolutely senseless 🙂 – I hope to continue meaningful dialogue – it was why I started blogging in the first place so I’m grateful that you find this blog helpful However, I think there is a wide range of views on the use of humor, even cutting humor – I’ve had members of all stripes as well as pastors interact w the post without really any concern. Look, we need to laugh – this is an absurd situation and if on one or two occasions, we veer off to poke fun, I actually think that’s ok.

      BTW, I make absolutely no judgments on other blogs – honestly, I appreciate that they blew the whistle on SGM dysfunction when no one else did so. You have to appreciate how hard that is and I’m not in a position to pass judgment on the whys and hows of doing so. All I know is that I want to have a different conversation, targeted primarily at members and on rare occasions, the content here will seem too cutting or sarcastic to some, less so to others (you may be surprised that some will write to me about being to “soft” on SGM). I can assure you, the use of humor will be rare but I will not be taking down this funny post.

  9. Thanks for your thoughtful response, SGMNation. Just to clarify, I don’t personally mind the humor. I was just sad to think that there are many people who after reading a post like that will dismiss your blog as just another partisan site and won’t return. And as further clarification, I am genuinely grateful to the “Big Blogs” who have done a wonderful service to Sovereign Grace church members in what they have published.

    But there’s no denying that many of the comments on those sites have been caustic enough to discourage a first-time reader from going back for a second visit. I have heard that expressed numerous times from people who, in my opinion, desperately need a better grip on the issues facing SGM but who feel that they can’t in good conscience read the Big Blogs.

    At any rate, thanks for considering my request, and for the excellent overview of the issues that you have provided.

    • agree w much of what you’re saying – thanks for reading and even more so for caring. let’s keep praying for our respective churches and for both pastors and members of those churches. Grace to you

  10. That is hilarious!
    I would like to suggest a modification, though. I suggest changing “His polity committees are stacked for success” to…

    “He knows how to do foreign missions within his own country.”

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