Sometimes I wonder if this whole process of training and placements and calling is worth it. Don’t get me wrong. I am in no doubt about my call, or my faith, but sometimes it seems that life would be so much simpler (and just as interesting, before anyone suggests otherwise) if you could just get on with life, working, having an income, a social life or even just a more ‘settled’ home life.

And “worth it” implies some kind of future reward, or better times. I’m not so naive to think that life will suddenly become wonderful when I end up in my own parish. That, judging from what I hear, is just the beginning of a whole new set of ‘challenges’.

I guess what I’m saying is that in the intensity of it all (and it is intense), it’s easy to overlook other things, other people. Little things cause a lot of friction, because they get into the apparently smooth-running machine which is the routine of study and preparation. And yet, it should, in a sense, be the other way round. ‘Life’ was there before studies and so study is the intruder, the grit in the life machine.

Sometimes it’s necessary to stop for a bit of maintenance and to gain some perspective. It’s a shame that it’s the ‘grit’ that forces a halt. Much better to have planned maintenance.

Sometimes I do wonder if it’s ‘worth it’. I need to recognise that that is not the advance warning signal, but the emergency stop on the machine.

Time for a maintenance schedule to be put in place.

3 responses to “Sometimes”

  1. Ha! Every year one of my targets has been to achieve a better work/life balance. It ain’t there yet – not in this “job”!

  2. ‘Growth’….some congregations just love that one. It excuses some of their attitudes.
    ‘A heart attack. God’s way of telling you to slow down’ (Acorn Antiques – Victoria Wood) – a life work balance is essential and it isn’t easy to find. Now in my third charge, having barely survived number one and been restored in number two, I’ve made a pledge that if ever there is a straight choice between family and work, then family win out. And so far, with a couple of minor exceptions, I’ve held to that.
    Paul might have been on to something when he was suggesting that singleness was the easier form of service in ministry. Even so, singles too have to be careful.
    The person that is easiest to overlook is yourself. That day off thing (General Assembly did actually approve of two days….) is very important for family and for self.

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