January 12, 2009


Yeah, I know it's been winter for like three weeks now, but we are getting some pretty heavy winter weather in Iowa this week.

I normally take Monday mornings off - to recouperate from the weekend - and then head in to the office after lunch. But I didn't really feel like shoveling the driveway, and I didn't really feel like turning on the heat over at the church just for myself, and I didn't really think that I could accomplish anything there that I couldn't accomplish just as well at home.

So I stayed in my pj's and worked from the couch today. And it was great.

There are definately some advantages to being a solo pastor at a small church with no other staff. Like being able to make my own schedule the way I have and the flexibility that comes with it. But there are also serious disadvantages.

Sometimes I need the accountability of others. It's easy to decide to come in late if no one is there and no one cares.

But it's also sometimes nice just to have other people to talk with in an office. My last church office situation was three interns together in one office with couches... and we definately spent 2/3 of our time chatting... about serious stuff! Bouncing ideas off of one another, talking about ministry plans, doing some tough theological work... and yes, complaining when the moment called for it. I miss having a couch in my office - but more importantly, I miss having people in my office.

Theologically, I'm very relational. I believe strongly that the Holy Spirit moves through many people and that only in community can we truly discern the Spirit. I believe that God wants us to be in relationship with others and that we cannot do this (the journey of faith) alone.

Now, I do have lots of groups that I connect with. I'm part of a sub-district group of UM pastors who meet once a month. I'm part of a group of young clergy that meets once a month. And I have breakfast every week with another pastor and DCE in town. So that fulfills some of that.

Most days, though, the internet is my connection to others. It is my source for theological discussions and brainstorming. But it's not always there when I need it, and it can't go out for a margarita after work. (or during work.)

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