In Lay Terms

Random Ramblings From a Church Nerd

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Why Do I Worry?

Some of you may remember my post, "Registration Blues". Well, again I was proven to be worrying too much. We have gotten a bunch of registrations in the last couple of days. We have surpassed the 50 registration mark (under 50, I thought we were going to look stupid).

As I write this paragraph above, my mind is pulled in two different directions.

First, as I stress myself out over registration numbers, I hear Jesus saying, "Therefore, I tell you, do not worry about your life..." Of course, registration numbers are not the same thing as life, but it does remind me that I cannot change anything by worrying. What will happen will happen.

On the other hand, I can hear some of my more evangelical relatives talking about how great it is the God provides. While I don't disagree with that statement, I always think that God has bigger things to deal with than me and my puny conference. Of course, maybe I should be believing that God truly cares about me and all the endeavors I undertake. So, thanks be to God!

I'm sorry that none of you can be there. However, I'm excited for the people who are coming. This conference is a grand experiment. I've already had challenges that we are too Christian (from someone in Northern Minnesota). I've heard that there are conservative faculty who are not excited that we are doing this conference.

I've also had some internal struggle. This conference is about spirituality and sexuality. "Spirituality" is so loosely defined, I feel like I can't be very Jesus-y. I told J to plan a devotion, but don't mention Jesus. Then I paused and said, "I just helped nail Jesus to the cross, didn't I?" I don't like being a general spiritualist. I'm more comfortable sharing my own particular brand of faith.

Anyway, struggles aside, I look forward to this weekend. I hope something good comes out of the work. If you have time, with all the important things going on in the world, and in our lives, please pray for this event and the participants.

Thanks, blogland!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Ross,
It's difficult to not worry over things that mean a great deal to you. The first time you and Kara took off for Cloquet on a Sunday evening and you were 16 and she was 14. Dad and I were a little shell-shocked. 'What have we done?' After fretting for several hours, we talked about it and said we're going to have to leave this in God's hands. Other than praying, and lecturing you to be careful, there was absolutely nothing that we could do to make sure you were safe.

I think there is a huge difference in worrying over something that you have the power to change and something that you don't--and the wisdom to know the difference (Sounds familiar--maybe we'll see the original manuscript?)

I know your conference will be great--just because you're involved. I'll keep it and the participants in my prayers--you're always in my prayers already!

9:44 AM  
Blogger Michael Dodd said...

1) Listen to your mom. Wisdom!
2) God has more important things to do than worry about your conference? God has more important things to do than worry about puffing up your ego, maybe, but God will use your conference to open eyes and ears and hearts, break chains and invite sons and daughters into love. I think that may be God's agenda. Jesus had more important things to do, but he healed one person at a time, expelled demons (mostly) one person at a time, and so on.
3) Why do you think we want to leave Jesus outside of our gay spiritual and sexual lives? Does his presence make us uncomfortable? If so, that needs serious reflection. If we think our presence will make him uncomfortable, I think we must not have been listening to him very well. Have we been with him and he with us so long, and still we do not know him?
4) I suspect Jesus would not be hurt if some other spiritual folks showed up, too. Do I think Jesus crosses the streets of gold to avoid running into Mohammed or Gotama? How weird would that be? Or that Martin Luther and Ignatius Loyola snub one another in heaven?

OLD JOKE: The only thing more surprising to me in heaven than some of the people I will see made it in will be how shocked they look to see me there.

I'll be praying for all of you and wishing I could be there.
Peace and fun and surprises be yours!

10:56 AM  
Blogger Vic Mansfield said...

Ross, ditto to what Damien says (and your momma). in Bending the Rule, Christopher just posted about how untidy our "liberal" and "conservative" labels truly are. We think we they are quite set. Perhaps they are, but I never fit in them very neatly (perhaps it is I who am untidy).

Anyway, I don't think we should be ashamed of "upsetting" someone because we are Christian. If that is what we are, then so be it. AND if some one else follows a different path, we can let be with that. We can begin to model a different kind of Christian behaviour (not modeled by folk such as Pat Robertson, for instance).

Regarding God's providence, it isn't that God has "more important things to worry about," it is that God is so broad and deep and wide, and high that God can provide for us all, even you!

I'm trusting that it's so. Prayers go upp for you and your weekend (and OH how I wish I could be there)!

Cheers, Joe.

9:23 PM  

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