January 28, 2010

Random (parenting) Question of the Week

I have recently developed callouses on both my hands from constant attempts to rock our 8-month-old to sleep in his baby carrier. Can anyone relate?

January 25, 2010

No Time To Think = No Time To Blog

Goodbye stability, hello chaos. The new year has brought with it some major changes for my vocational life: departing the civil service after 3 years with the City and County of Honolulu, starting a new part-time job at a residential mental health crisis shelter, beginning a new pastoral ministry internship at our church and preparing for another busy semester of MSW studies (including a 16-hour-per-week practicum). Oh, and I almost forgot to mention our two adorable toddling/crawling boys who are still toddling and crawling up the wazoo last I checked (unless Sesame Street is on).

Not surprisingly, this is not the most conducive schedule for blogging. Instead of reflecting on the intersection of evangelicalism and the public square in my spare moments, I'm now engulfed in a non-stop whirlwind of church-related meetings and activities that must be juggled with classes, homework, practicum and my "other" job. The time I used to allocate for reading up on theology and culture is now spent attending to the mechanics of our sharply tightened family budget thanks to the good old "envelope system." The scarce but precious hours I once devoted to the blogosphere have have all but evaporated.

People who experience a call to vocational ministry in the local church are probably not supposed to say things like this, but I kinda sorta miss my government cubicle and the (relative) predictability it represented. The intellectual/spiritual rewards were low, but so were the risks incurred by erratic scheduling and financial instability. When your job doesn't require much mental energy, you can use the remaining brain cells to think as you please. Ironically, the confines of a cubicle were more conducive to the free flow of blog post ideas than the fast-paced "real world" of bi-vocational ministry.

While this transition neither ambushed nor slowly snuck up on us (we planned, scrutinized, sought wisdom and prayed about it for over 6 months), adjusting to the practical implications will take some time now that the initial self-congratulatory luster of "taking a pay cut to do what you love" has worn off. And only time will tell if (or how) the Common Loon blog will adapt to its new habitat.