Monday, December 1, 2008

Back to work...

I have sat in front of my computer for a while now. Trying to write my message for chapel. I selected the passage months ago, so it shouldn't be too hard now, right? Just use that fancy education, pull out the main point and exposit. Spice it up with some stories and, voila, a chapel talk. Doin' this for years, now. No big deal. Right?

A funny thing happened on the way to "world's easiest chapel talk." Seems the transition from "crisis response" to "desk work" is harder than I anticipated. Should I really be sitting at my desk again while others no longer have theirs? Can I justify spending an entire afternoon contemplating 7 verses of Scripture when some in our immediate community have much bigger things to contemplate?

The Tea Fire broke out 18 days ago. For many of those 18 days, I could find something to do that at least felt as though I was making war against the fallen world in which we live, with its fires, tornadoes, mudslides, earthquakes and hurricanes. I could fill sandbags, sift through ash, load and unload U-Hauls and crawl into bed at night knowing I charged the darkness in the name of hope.

But charging the fluorescent lights of my office feels altogether different. And therein, I have concluded, lies the issue and the issue is entirely mine. I fell too in love with the idea of Benji the Hero and am finding it hard to take off the costume and return to my mild-mannered alter ego. But, this is the front upon which I've been called to fight now. At this computer.

Perhaps writing this chapel talk is the boldest act of hope I can muster. Perhaps daring to get back to "normal" will scream loudly to the world that though all is not now right, all is not yet finished. Perhaps "crisis response" is simply character training ground for "desk work." Perhaps this isn't about my fancy education or my ability to exposit at all. Perhaps it is simply about moving on. In hope.

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