It’s pouring rain outside. Through the droplets on the screen I can still see the trucks thundering by. Strange, it wasn’t until day 3 that the weight of the new year hit me.
I’m facing a vote next month to become associate pastor at our church. The process began late last year. The pastor wants me to start a ministry to the young adults, college and career, as it were and in a few weeks, the people will vote. And with that the courtroom drama (brain war) really begins.
My heart is in ministry. I attended college to become a minister to God’s people. After a year in Maine and three years in Jersey, the focus was refined and I realized that I love the youth. The gargantuan hurdle called growing up, the pressure of unlimited horizons, the wicked framework that is our world–then holding them up, walking beside them and fixing their eyes on the greater, Divine light. This thrills my heart and the sceptics who despise youth can tie a millstone around their neck and jump off a cliff. But that is not the need at this church.
Enter web design. After starting my own design business out of necessity six months ago, the business has grown to the point where I can see a strong future in it. I am good at what I do. I enjoy what I do. I don’t feel inadequate. My lips don’t fail me. Pharoah doesn’t threaten me. I don’t need an Aaron. But I sit all day, staring out rain-soaked windows, longing for human interaction. I feel like I’m watching sheep, alone, wandering around, lots of time to think.
The prosecutor stands again and introduces a new argument. Working with young adults? he asks. I have no experience there. There is no fire in my bones. Teaching a parenting class? Sometimes you have to do things you’re not too keen on when you’re a leader. Have I been too long at my own business that I’ve forgotten what it’s like to put the needs of others before my own?
Then I look around at the city and a verse of an old poem comes back to me: “My heart’s in the highlands, my heart is not here.” How long can a man be without his home? How long does he operate with the desire to build a cabin on a lake somewhere and escape from the madness that is this urban sprawl? And yet who ever changed the world from the loft of a log cabin?