Sitting at a Starbucks as per my usual in the morning- the title only being funny because I am having a green tea Frappucino. Reminds me of when we moved into the parsonage at Christ UMC in Sugar Land, because our phone number had originally belonged to a coffee shop called “Beans and Leaves.” We got calls for them all the time, and we had a sneaking suspician that they were selling more than tea leaves, just based on the calls from the clientele. Because of course the new preacher’s family had a phone number on their land line connected to a drug front. It’s the kind of thing that would only happen to us. After a while, the calls stopped coming, once they realized that the shop had closed. I can only imagine how. SLPD, probably. Whatever it was, we were extremely relieved. Perhaps they just changed their phone number, and that’s ok, too. But I never saw a physical building around town, so I doubt it.
Later on, we got a coffee shop called “The Daily Grind,” only funny because it’s the same chain in the TV show “Weeds.” Everything is connected.
Speaking of drugs, I’ve started watching “Breaking Bad” again. It stands up over time. I am enthralled by every twist and turn, just as I was the first time around… and in fact, there’s a lot I’ve forgotten, so it’s like getting to see it fresh. The idea is to turn Walter White from a mild-mannered chemistry teacher into Scarface, and if you haven’t seen it, it’s worth a look. I was hooked from episode one, even though I have never and will never try meth off the street. Prescribed Adderall was quite enough.
In other news, I signed up for an ITIL class, which will further me in my career, and I did not choose the online version. It was only $995 for the 2-day class and the exam, and I will be sought after like a boss because not many people have that certification. If I like it, I can graduate into project management later on, which seems to be more my style than programming, because I just do not have a math and science brain. However, I do have the ability to manage, delegate, and come up with excellent ideas. I am a big picture sort of person, and to be honest, coding is lonely. The class starts next week. #fingerscrossed
I don’t want to leave DSI, but I am hoping that with this ITIL certification, I can get a job at a school with tuition waivers…. particularly Howard, but not necessarily because I’d have to change my major. Not too much of a problem because I have so many hours in psychology, but political science has more bearing on theology than you might think, because it teaches you more about how people are influenced by many factors in how they vote, faith being one of them. It’s not my job to teach people how to vote, but to determine how everyone comes to those decisons and how to reach all of them. I don’t want to base my church on the Democratic party, I want it to be inclusive of all. But there are certain things for which I will not stand, which is the idea that Jesus was somehow for bombing people… and that reaches across party lines. We all get up in our feelings regarding terrorism, and our feelings direct our votes when we’re terrified. Being Christ in the world is not about embracing retribution on either side of the aisle, as many did on Sept. 12th. I don’t think we completely thought that situation through, and if there’s anything Jesus taught, it was thinking all the way through a problem before acting on it. Bombing the hell out of Iraq was a kneejerk reaction, and not limited to Republicans in the slightest. It was a reaction instead of response, and the difference between the two is time.
It is a lesson I have learned over and over, with both success and failure laid out like bricks in Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado… because I didn’t do anything except box myself in with the enormity of my failure to think things through. My heart broke in terror when I saw the bricks rising to my neck…. avoidable if I had taken the time to respond rather than react. But as always, hindsight is 20/20. My next move is taking down the walls I’ve built, because while it is keeping bad stuff out, it’s not letting good stuff in, either. I wallow in the mistakes I’ve made, unable to forgive myself. I am hoping this course is making room for the future, because I can command an even higher salary that will allow me to sock away money to graduate without debt, even from grad school. It’s something that I desperately need, because you know, pastors make SO MUCH. 😛
But the important part is not the money, but the ability to lead as the ultimate Nouwen wounded healer. I will never be able to approach ministry as somone who’s not. People know too much about me to believe that the light of Christ shines through me with perfection, only by breaking open my flaws to let light in…. filling the cracks with gold to make the broken more beautiful.
Sometimes you just have to show your crack… that was a joke…. it’s funny.
At least I am well enough to joke. It’s been a rough few days, but I am making it, step by step along a deep and winding road.