Rip van Computer and Catch-up Stains (for starters)

by Andy Wood on July 19, 2008

in Uncategorized

Scattershooting, and wondering whatever happened to Blackie Sherrod

Asleep at ComputerRip van Computer
I feel like Rip van Computer.  Last weekend I finished the book I’ve been writing with Kaye, the latest Regent class, and Carrie and Kyle’s move.  I found my email inbox with a record 761 messages in them (sorry if yours was one of them – I promise I wasn’t trying to diss you.)  My Google Reader had nearly 900 entries.  But this goes much deeper and further.  For seven months I’ve been in “hunker down” mode, time- and responsibility-wise.  The clouds have parted, and the time-sun is starting to shine.  But I feel like I’ve been asleep at the keyboard.

Catch-up Stains
Right after that, prophetically, I read this story from John Fischer, reportedly from the writings of Rabbi Kushner, about a group of tourists who went on a safari in Africa and hired several native porters to carry their supplies for them. After three days, the porters announced they would have to stop and rest for a day. When the tourists asked why, the porters said they weren’t tired, “…but we have walked too far too fast and now we must wait for our souls to catch up to us.” John talked about the need to let our souls catch up, and I can relate.  It’s time for some soul work.

Resumes and Cover Letters
My son sent me his resume with a cover letter this morning for me to review.  It reminded me of the massive staff search process we have just been through.  I absolutely know how the American Idol judges feel when they do their nationwide search.  Sometime soon I’ll share with you some of the good, the bad, and the you-gotta-be-kidding-me stuff we received (with names changed to protect the laughing).

Handling Fees?
Jackie Huba just shared an experience in which she was purchasing a $50 gift certificate from her favorite day spa. (I can relate – I just did that for my wife).  As the clerk filled out the certificate, she said the total would be $51.50.   “Handling fee,” she said.  When asked what kind of handling was involved, she said (with a straight face, I suppose), “Writing out the certificate,” she said. “It’s labor-intensive.”

I’m not sure whether to laugh, cry, get mad, or get inspired.   We all know about the airlines introducing fees for different things we all sort of took for granted.  Before long, I suppose, we’ll see all kind of new fees for “labor-intensive” or “optional” services:

  • A coin-operated machine to actually make the signals change at the crosswalk.
  • Utility fees for running water, heated or air-conditioned rooms, or the ESPN you get to see for free at the restaurant/bar.
  • Who needs bottled water?  How about coin-operated fountains?
  • Forestry use fees whenever we get paper bills, paper grocery bags, or copies at Kinko’s.
  • Self-serve fees at gas stations for people who choose to pump their own gas.  (Yes, I know what you’re thinking.  But who said these things had to make sense?)

We could do this at church, too!

  • Pay toilets (with optional magnetic “swipe and wipe” cards free to tithers, of course)
  • Bulletin removal fee, to cover the cost of removing all discarded church bulletins
  • Available earplugs ($1.50 each) to quiet down that blaring music.
  • Parking fees, that old classic.  Assessed to anybody who brings more than one vehicle from their household.

Of course, I have a feeling that these things would go over about as well as a $1.50 “labor-intensive” handwriting fee.

How about you?  Have you seen any ridiculous new ways of separating you from your money?

Here’s a great quote from Bobby Gruenewald, from, about failure:

As believers, it’s tempting to interpret failure as a sign from God that it’s time to stop. By all means, do take those seasons to pray for guidance. But remember, too, that failure is actually a foundation of our faith. We all fall short of the glory of God, and that’s why we need Jesus. So as the Church, we shouldn’t just accept failure, we should embrace it as an undeniable part of who we are. That knowledge gives us freedom to attempt the impossible, to risk the unthinkable, and to accomplish the incredible things that God wants to do through us.

You can find the whole article here.

Things I’m Glad Jesus Talked About
Michael Spencer has a great list of “Stuff I’m Glad Jesus Chose to Deal With While He Was Here.”  You owe it to yourself to read it.

Here are 10 other things I’m glad Jesus chose to deal with:

  • Meddling mothers
  • Estranged families
  • Family arguments/disputes
  • Rules devoid of reason or reasons or horse sense
  • Women who wouldn’t take “no” for an answer
  • People who could tell you what they wanted in five words or less
  • People who would never admit their true agenda or desires
  • “Thunderheads” who, in the name of zeal, were more interested in calling down lightening than being enlightened with truth.
  • Parents whose children had died.
  • Treasure hunters.

Can you add to the list?  How about things you wish Jesus had dealt with, but didn’t?  Or things you’re glad Jesus chose to ignore?

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

singer songwriter June 18, 2014 at 6:28 am

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