85: Markus Watson | Betrayed and Beloved

Grace Enough Podcast 82: Markus Watson | Betrayed and Beloved

Markus Watson | Betrayed and Beloved

I’m a Presbyterian pastor, living in San Diego with my beautiful wife, Robin, and my three kids, Micah, Macy, and Drew. 

I currently serve as an interim pastor at a small but mighty congregation in the rural town of Westmorland, about two hours east of San Diego. 

I also host the Spiritual Life and Leadership podcast and am the author of Beyond Thingification: Helping Your Church Engage in God’s Mission.

I’ve been serving in churches for over twenty years.  But, believe it or not, church ministry was never on my radar when I was young…

Markus Watson joins me on the Grace Enough Podcast to discuss his journey of being falsely accused the vortex of darkness he entered and truly understanding and believing he was/is God’s beloved.

Questions Markus and I Discussed:

  1. (5:46) You grew up in a Christian household in Los Angeles.  What was it like living in a large city like L.A., yet being the pastor’s kid?
  2. (10:53) After college you return to Hollywood to begin living out your childhood dream.  Walk us through that experience and what happened that led you to make a 180 degree career turn.
  3. (15:17) Tell us about your first ministry position in Union, Kentucky
  4. (17:27) In 2007, you moved to San Diego to accept a lead pastor position.  Several years into your role life really came to a crashing halt when a member accused you of having a pornography problem.  Walk us through that time line and how long it took to be found innocent of those false charges.
  5. (23:52) Did you constantly think, does everybody around me think that I’m doing this?
  6. (31:47) How did your family deal with the accusation and months long process?
  7. (41:16) You would call the false accusations and investigation a dark night of the soul experience. During that time you truly learned and believe you were/are the beloved of God. Share some of the books resources that helped you during that lonely time.
  8. (46:31) Your passion is to help the people of God learn to participate in God’s mission of restoring shalom in the world. What does that mean to you and how are you going about doing that in your day to day life?

Quotes to Remember:

“I got involved in Campus Crusade for Christ… It was transformative for me. I learned how to share my faith. I learned how to lead a Bible study, I learned how to give a talk and found I really enjoyed doing that.”

“I loved it [seminary]. As soon as I started taking those classes, I just remember thinking to myself, Oh my gosh, I can’t believe I get to learn all this stuff. It felt like I was exactly where I needed to be.”

“I need to let you know that someone has accused you of having a problem with pornography.”

“I fell into this vortex of darkness. I was scared. I was angry. I was angry, in part because we have a process for dealing with accusations and he wasn’t following the process.”

“I have a few points of light in the midst of that darkness. One is my friend Kevin, who was my accountability partner. He really went to bat for me during that time.”

“It’s interesting how in these situations, it’s like light and darkness together, right? And somehow God works through that.”

“Then, I had this picture in my mind of me just sort of sitting in a prison cell having lost everything, my job, my ordination, my family, my reputation, everything. And then, I just heard God say, ‘But Markus,  you might lose everything, but you will never lose My love for you.’ That’s the one thing no one can ever take away from you. And that was an utterly transformative moment for me because I understood God’s love in a way that I had never understood it before.”

“It’s not about earning God’s love. It’s just about surrendering to it.”

Scripture References:

  • Psalms of Lament

Resources Mentioned:

Related Episodes:

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