(Image found, ironically enough, at Apprising Ministries.)
There comes a time when, no matter how much you yell and scream, there are just some things in life that just aren't worth wasting your breath over. That's why this will be the very last blog post, tweet, Facebook rant I will ever write about Mark Driscoll.
Long-time readers will know that I am not a fan of the Seattle mega-church New Calvinist preacher. I used to think that maybe if enough ranted about him enough, he would somehow get the idea that his words are causing more harm than good. But after his recent interview with British radio host Justin Brierly, I now see that no matter how many emails we send Mars Hill, Driscoll will always be a bully.
Case in point, at one point during the interview Brierly says that his wife is pastor of their church, which is where Driscoll lost his shit:
Driscoll: Kay, let me ask you a few hard questions.
Brierley: Go ahead, go ahead.
Driscoll: So, in the church that your wife pastors, how many young men have come to Christ in the last year?
Brierley: Well we’re not a huge church, unlike yours, but I’d say there’s two or three probably in the last year who certainly, yah, I’d say have come to Christ in a pretty meaningful way.
Driscoll: Okay and in the church, what percentage is young men, single men?
Brierley: It’s difficult to say off the top of my head, but I’ll freely say it’s certainly not a big percentage, no.
Driscoll: Kay, and are you okay with that? Do you think that’s the best way to go?
Brierley: No, but can it be so easily put down to the fact that the church is being run by a woman? I mean, is that …
Driscoll: Yup. Yup. You look at your results, you look at my results, and you look at the variable that’s most obvious.
Brierley: Well, in our case, the …
Driscoll: This is where the excuses come, not the verses. This is where the excuses come, not the verses.
Brierley: … Up to the point my wife took over, it had been run by men. Since she’s come, lots of new families, lots of younger people, both men and women, have come. I wouldn’t say the balance is right perfect yet by any means. But it’s certainly a lot better than it ever was. And so I don’t necessarily see quite the same situation that you paint there in terms of men not relating. I see more men in the church since she’s been there than before she was there, in a way.
Driscoll: What kind of men? Strong men?
Brierley: Well, men. I mean, men come in different shapes and sizes. I mean, yah, both really. Men who are very masculine, men who are, I guess, on a spectrum, more effeminate. But I couldn’t say that there’s been a sort of dearth of men in the church since she’s arrived. I mean, Mark, I don’t want to get into a sort of argument.
Driscoll: No, no, you don’t want to sit in my seat, I understand. So does your wife do counseling with men? Sexual counseling? Does she talk about masturbation, pornography, the stuff that I do?
Brierley: Well no, she doesn’t.
Driscoll: Well, who does talk to the men about those things, especially the young men?
Brierley: Well there are other people that she can pass them on to. We have male elders in our church who, you know, would be able to tackle those kinds of questions. I mean, but would you speak with those kinds of issues to a female in your church?
Driscoll: Uh no. If they’re a married couple we might meet with them as a couple. But if it’s a woman, we would have women leaders meet with them.
Brierley: Sure, well it’s the same scenario in our church really.
Driscoll: Well except for who’s in charge.
Brierley: Well what’s wrong with… I mean, I agree, obviously theologically we’re not on the same page here Mark in terms of…
Driscoll: Do you believe in a conscious literal eternal torment of hell?
Brierley: What has that got to do with the issue of women in leadership, if you don’t mind me asking?
Driscoll: It does. It depends on your view of God. Is God like a mom who just embraces everyone? Or is he like a father who also protects, and defends, and disciplines? If you won’t answer the question, I think I know the answer.
Even though I've never been to Mars Hill church, I used to listen to Driscoll's podcasts on a semi-regular basis. The more I listened to him, though, the more I was reminded of all the kids in high school who called me a 'faggot' and a 'queer.' Instead of reminding me of God's grace, Driscoll reminded me time and time again that I'm just a 'boy who shaves.' Even after I stopped listening to his sermons, I still had a tiny voice inside of my head telling me that God will never love me because I'm not a 'real man.'
Well, I'm done with all of that now!
I'm done with Driscoll and his misogyny and homophobia. I'm done with constantly feeling like crap. I'm done with obsessing over him. Maybe some day he will learn the error of his ways. But for now, I'm done trying to make it happen.