Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Vulnerability-Part Two

My friend Bethany has been doing a blog series about naming and it's importance these last few months. Inspired by her insights that she's discovering about herself, I wanted to write a little more on the subject vulnerability, because it's something that is my "achilles heel."

I've been pondering it tonight after House Church, that I feel in myself a drawing inward instead of a drawing out. I don't know if it is because work is so crazy, or because my finances are so crazy, that I feel this drawing in of myself. That my relational resources are spent and must be conserved to a very specific time frame of 6-8 on Tuesdays. That I want to ask questions about you, but only have time to care about me right now. If you come back and talk to me in several weeks, I might be a little less self-centered. That because my bank balance is small, my relational interactions are small and contained.

One of the things that we read tonight at House Church was the scripture from Matthew 6:1, the Message Version (say what you will about Eugene, it is interesting to read), "Be especially careful when you are trying to be good so that you don't make a performance out of it. It might be good theater, but the God who made you won't be applauding." Something about it struck me. I've been pondering it since then H.C. tonight(and went to church and got my laptop to post at my apartment-hooray wireless).

I think that I am vulnerability challenged. I want to be the kind of person with whom people bring their cares and concerns, but I am not a person who brings their cares and concerns to others easily either. Does that make vulnerability a two-way street? When people ask me questions, I don't often reciprocate the questions, but I realize it until after conversations. I don't mean it to be this way, but I don't know how to right it. I feel relationally hungry and full all at the same time. I think that I play-act at things being good so that I don't know how to share the bad without it being ALL bad.

When I think back on times when I feel that I have been most "vulnerable," perhaps I have confused that with depression and moodiness and it was received poorly. I think that I have been told that sharing the bad was undesirable, that I have to construct a good front over crappy situations because that is who I am supposed to be.

So where does this leave me in my ponderance? I think, as I see myself wanting to draw into closer relationships with people, I am unsure of what it means now to fully embrace someone at the same time allowing them to fully embrace me. To truly be willing to lay all the "cards on the table," letting them peruse through them and waiting for the reaction and doing the same thing in return.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

News bulletin (a non weather report)

For those of you who've been anxiously awaiting another post about the weather man....

I don't have any new updates, but I wanted to blog a little more about what's been going on in my life these past few crazy busy weeks:

1) My good friends, Jess and Heath, got engaged and I could not be more excited for them (I also feel like I had a hand in them getting together back when Heath was an intern).

2) Graduation looms and this year, along with every year, is bittersweet. The seniors are graduating and I'm very sad to see them go but excited for them and the new things that they will soon be facing. They've been a great class of strong, gifted leaders.

3) I've started looking to the future leaders in the youth ministry and am so excited about seeing the two girls who are my "student leaders" for the Ohio trip take ownership and get excited. I look forward to seeing them grow and change as leaders.

4) I've been ridiculously blessed by the new friends in my life.

5) I've moved into a new apartment, one very close to work (nice for the extremely high gas prices that we're experiencing-It was almost a month since my last fill-up!)I've been pleasantly suprised at how I've been mostly enjoying living on my own and am looking forward to making it a little more homey in the upcoming months.

6) Vacation Bible School is rapidly, rapidly approaching (I am resisting the urge to pull a Jamie-meeting-Philip hyperventillation scene), plus our trial run of our almost free after VBS day care for school aged kids. We're hoping to really reach out to families in the community around us.

7) Our high schoolers are going to Ohio the week after VBS (I think that I took crazy pills when I made that decision). This is the first time since I've been here that we've done something servant event oriented and I'm trying to have no expectations regarding the number of youth that attend. In the last week of June, our middle schoolers are going to Houston and I am excited to see them stretch and grow in new ways. Plus, we have a lot of incoming 6th graders going, so I am looking forward to building those relationships and spending time with them.

8) The mom visiting: My mom is coming to visit at the end of May and the first week of June to help with VBS. Also, the Sarah is bringing a couple of students out to our church as their summer mission trip. yay!

Friday, May 09, 2008

From All Angles... (A weather report... kind of)

So, some of you have been following with rapt attention the doings of my high school youth and their determination that I date the young, single weatherman that has been attending our church. Apparently, he has gained the stamp of approval of a few of the other youth the past few sundays at church and still seems oblivious to the whisperings and the sometimes not so quiet gossiping of the youth in the row behind him at church. This past Sunday, the following conversation took place:

Youth: (whispering) Brother, that's the weatherman we want our DCE to date (pointing to weatherman who is sitting right in front of her).
Brother: the WEATHERMAN (not whispering and in a very theatrical voice) THE WEATHERMAN.. WHAT CHANNEL IS THE WEATHER MAN ON... I WANT TO MEET THIS WEATHERMAN!!!

As luck or whatever would have it, it turns out that my youth are not the only ones who are interested in finding boys for me. My grandpa (who also told me to run over my cousin when I was home a couple of weeks ago), shook his finger at me rather severly and said, "you don't come back until you have a husband..." A few other friends have been putting the presure on about me finding someone to date and today, I received an email from a member that I only know vaguely.

The email's subject line was "question from the website," so I assumed it had to do something with VBS that is a few weeks away and with which she has helped in the past. No... her email starts, "I know this is kind of weird, but I have a nice christian single co-worker that I thought you might be interested in dating... he's lutheran too! what do you think?"

Maybe it's the spring weather that has cause all this extra attention to "sprout" about my dating life.