Go Home Gen-X, You’re Done

Go home Gen X.  You’re done.

At least that’s what I hear when conversations around institutions and leadership turn the importance of the Millenials. I guess the good news is, we’re not all drunks or drugged out, given the inauspicious start my generation had.  But doesn’t anyone care that we’re still here?

It’s hard not to get my whine on, or get angry at the fact that the Boomers and Millenials seem to be squishing us right out of the way. If nothing else, most of us can relate to poor Prince Charles as he watches the throne edge closer to his eldest child as the Queen continues to reign.

But when I dig a little deeper into my annoyance, it doesn’t just echo with my middle child syndrome.  It feels awfully close to conversations around privilege that have forced me realize my part in making room for all kinds of people to be seen and heard and cared about:

  • Women of color, especially, but all those we think of as ethnic minorities
  • LGBTQ people as they seek rights and protections beyond access to marriage.
  • The financially precarious, jobless and homeless.
  • The mentally ill
  • People who don’t adhere to the Christian worldview.

And then there all the ways these groups intersect, creating quite the colorful venn diagram

And then they collide with my white, middle-class, relatively healthy and sane, home-owning, Christ-following self.

All of a sudden, it’s  awfully crowded in my world, and that requires more giving away than I ever imagined.

But I also believe that my voice has value in its uniqueness.  I don’t know how this mid-career call to pastoral leadership will get played out.  But I suspect  that I’ll be working alongside some amazing Boomers, Millenials, Mosaics and Xers along the way.  And I pray that the faces and bodies and homes and lives and histories they bring along will make us a noisy, messy, diverse group that does more welcoming in than elbowing out.


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