Baby Fever in Full Force

This isn't the first time I've come down with a case, but it seems to be a little stronger this time. Is that because I'm feeling uncertain about ordination plans? Possibly.

But it's also because if we stay right were we are, there are some things that would be really, really easy about having a baby. I could keep working, and could probably bring the sproutling with me. Mr. M's insurance is great. His time off/ schedule would be great for spending time with us.


The Wonderful Bishop of Oz

My meeting with the Bishop today is probably a little overdue. I passed through BACOM over a month ago, but things have been pretty nutty for my priest. Ah, so be it.

I'm going up to the seat of the diocese today, and talking to Bishop M about becoming a Postulant (icky word, isn't it?). Hopefully, all will go smoothly, and he'll give me 40 pages of application to complete.


Proselytising Panties?

I couldn't help but share these "Christian Panties" I found on a google search for something else.

I suspect that if you're sharing these with someone who doesn't already know your beliefs, they might not really do much for outreach.

Depending on how you look at that.


Becoming the Person You Hate the Most

My priest, in talking about Christ's crucification, likens Jesus's social status on earth to "the most despised person in society." More specifically, he asked us to imagine "becoming the person you hate the most." Because Christ took on such low esteem, executed as a criminal.

I thought of my grandfather, and was horrified. This is a man who has done horrible, violent things to those he ought to most protect. The idea of becoming him was completely repugnant. How could I live with myself if I was himself?

Then I thought of our vow in the baptismal covenant to "serve Christ in all persons." If I'm identifying with Jesus by becoming the person I hate the most, then I'm that much closer to seeing Christ in everyone.

Of course, the rational side of me argues that while Jesus might have died a criminal's death, he didn't do the crime. My grandfather, meanwhile, isn't a criminal only because no charges were ever pressed.

So this is still a stuggle, and I certainly have anger that lingers.

In unrelated news: I've decided that I hope very much that angels sound like Dolly Parton.


Youth Group

Well, no one was killed or maimed this morning, so essentially it was fine. It's really really hard for me to keep conversation going in a group like that, though. There wasn't much empty silence, but it was a struggle on my part.

There were 5 kids there this morning, and one other adult. 4 of the kids were in the 9th and 10th grades, attend the same school, and like to whisper amongst themselves (the two girls were bad about this, in particular). The other girl was in middle school, and lives in another town. She was a sweetie, so I felt pretty bad about that. They say on one side of the room, she sat next to me.

I've heard a lot of people talking lately about kids who don't fit in, who get along better with adults than their peers. My priest's eldest daughter (whom I'm nuts about), the neice of a woman on a newlywed forum I'm part of, the granddaughter of some friends.

It coincides pretty well with what my spiritual advisor recently told me: Stop looking for friends your own age. That's not working.

I wish I'd heard that sooner.

I talked to my priest's wife today-- she's an amazing woman. I mentioned in passing how lonely it's been for me to live here, and she was stunned. Said she never would have guessed. Not surprisingly, she feels the same way. We're going movies together soon.

Letting go of my idea of who "friends" should be feels very exciting right now. It feels good to let that mean kindred spirits, rather than people who are in similar stations in life.

All this goes to say that the left-out girl in Sunday School this morning felt very much like a kindred spirit, and I doubt the morning was useful to any of the other kids there. *sigh*

In completely unrelated news, my turkey chili turned out great.

1 lb. ground turkey
1 medium onion
1 medium green pepper
2 cloves garlic
3 14-oz cans petite diced tomatoes, drained
2 15-oz cans pinto beans, drained
2/3 c salsa
1 tbsp cili powder
1 tbsp cumin
1/2 tsp ground red pepper

Saute onion, green pepper, and garlic. Add turkey, cook till browned. Put all ingredients into a large pot, simmer for 30 minutes.


A New Adventure

In my role as "Facilitator for Children and Youth Christian Formation" ( not a moniker I chose, by the way), I'll occasionally fill in for a Sunday School teacher who's out. Tomorrow, I'll be leading the 7th-10th graders.

I have a confession. I'm a little scared of teenagers. Not because I think they're thugs, or badly behaved, or mean people. I just have no concept of what goes on in teenagers' heads. People assume that since I'm one of the youngest adults in the congregation, I'll relate well to our youth. I'm not sure they know that it's just my body that's young. Inside, I was born 80 and am regressing.

Wish me luck. I'll let you know tomorrow how it went.



I was doing morning prayer from the Prayer Book today during Quaker Meeting (I even snuck my little Anglican rosary in), and one phrase in particular really stood out to me: "Give me the joy of your saving help again, and sustain me with your bountiful spirit." (BCP 137)

The word bountiful brought a couple other phrases to mind:
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! (Mt 7:7-10)

Bountiful (per the online Miriam-Wester dictionary):
1 : liberal in bestowing gifts or favors
2 : given or provided abundantly
And from the M-W Thesaurus:
1 :being more than enough without being excessive -- see PLENTIFUL
2 :giving or sharing in abundance and without hesitation -- see GENEROUS

Really makes you think when you spend your days just worried about enough. Enough money, enough smarts, enough time.

If God is a bountiful God, a plentiful God, an abundant God, then we can rest in that. Or, as a priest pointed out from the King James (generally abyssmal) translation, we should learn to "not fret yourselves." (How's that for a creative reflexive verb?)

But here's where I get stuck. I think there is abundance. I think God is generous. But I also think thousands of people are starving, dying of curable diseases, and being hunted by their own species. So how do I rest in God's abundance when I don't see it in the lives of so many? I certainly don't believe they're just not asking for it the right way - I don't believe God is petty.

The closest I can get to answering this is to say that the needy, sick, and scared will receive more of God's generousity if I extend it, and I'll see more of God's abundance if I teach others to meet uncomfortable needs.

This doesn't take away my bills, make my transcripts more impressive, or get the laundry done, so I don't have a firm conclusion. But God has a bountiful spirit, so let's see if we can work with that.