Blue collar clergy work is the best.
On Friday, I jumped into a uhaul with two church friends and we took to the road. I sat in the middle seat – which really isn’t a seat at all but it has a seat belt so I’m guessing it’s legal. We took off, up the Westside Highway (which is illegal in a truck), onto the GWB Bridge, and we headed through the wilds of New Jersey, towards the mystical land of Pennsylvania. We were off to buy Christmas trees.
Dozens of them.
It rained the entire time. It looked like we were driving in a cloud through most of it. I was the personal assistant to whoever was driving – answering their phones, reading their emails, playing with their iPads. And during our multiple junk food stops (I mean, we’re in the burbs – we had to), some punk little kid called me an elf. We were on a mission into middle America – to harvest its trees and drag them back into the great City of New York – all part of an annual fundraiser for the church. It was my first time being part of the planning crew. Actually, it was the first time any of us were on the planning team (and it showed). But we had a lot of fun. And we lifted a lot of trees. Even trees bigger than me.
Which is why I’m terribly tired and sore on this Sunday Afternoon.
We raised about 1500 for this sale. We learned how to run this sale in the future. And I’m working on a one page description on how to run the sale because, well, it is amazing to me that churches don’t have operating manual/procedure lists on how to do things. I understand why we rely on individuals knowing things. I know why it is important to have pillars of our ministry programs who know everything and have completely bought into being the pillars of their ministries. But that still doesn’t mean we can’t have a one page sheet on HOW those pillars function in these ministries. And the reason why that matters is because when those pillars leave, or step back, those ministries end up flopping around like crazy. This is all from my personal experience being in the church. Like, how I keep messing up Advent for the Children and their Families at my internship site. I just don’t have the calendar in place, nor the vision, experience, or training to pick up on everything once an existing system is dumped on my lap. Which is fine, really. I’m a quick learner. And I like making things my own, changing it, and formulating on what matters and what works. So, the future of my ministry will consist of one page description sheets. It might not be very good but, by God, it will be well documented. This is what the church gets when it lets a web programmer into its ranks. We have struggled against the demon of poor documentation all our lives. It must be exorcised.