Once everyone wakes up from their naps we are heading to Pasadena for the day to run errands on Fuller's campus. I am withdrawing from my one lone class for the quarter because life got in the way a little more forcefully than I had originally planned on when I first signed up for the course. Tyler is studying for his exams, preparing to teach his first class, finishing his last major paper, taking a class on Ugaritic, and working at the ABMC. That leaves little time for him to stay with the kids while I am away all day every Wednesday.
Livia is nothing short of a crazy toddler who's first impulse is to take over the entire house every waking moment with her toys, emotions, and demands. Jude's food allergies leave me running on low steam by the end of the day to the point that opening at dense text book on Organizational Theory doesn't sound like much fun. Plus, if I were to stay in class and take Sundays to study (our original plan) that means we put our marriage on hold until May after his exams, or really until June, when our classes are over. I can't square that. What was I thinking when I signed up for this in the first place?
Oh yeah, Rick Beaton is one of the best at Fuller, and this class is possibly a one time deal. It's titled "Biblical Organizational Leadership." During the first meeting Beaton had us share our reason for enrolling. Several suck-ups said because they liked him so much. So in an effort to be a little less obnoxious, even though that was my main reason as well, I said that I was sick of pastors not knowing how to lead a group of people. I'm tired of there being no vision in the church and therefore no progress forward in how to best implement the Gospel into our daily lives as we seek to be more like Jesus simply because weak leaders are the pastors. I don't want to be a pastor that shies away from speaking the difficult messages, or doing the challenging administrative work of hiring and firing the right people simply because I am afraid people may get upset. Give me a break. I think being a "Christian" extends beyond not wanting to hurt someone's feelings. So I wanted to take the class. Alas, maybe now that I don't have to read the text books with a highlighter in my hand and a computer on my lap I can scroll through them while feeding Jude and Livia every now and then. Because I still don't want to be a pastor that is a wimp.
Plus, this class was a great example of practical theology. How does the fact that Scripture is our final authority on life influence the ways in which we practice living? It was a complete intersection of theology and lifestyle. It was going to help us, as leaders, better use our theological suppositions to creatively structure ways of thought about leading that are both biblical and theologically savvy. Seminaries need more of this: teaching us how to integrate heady academic stuff with the nitty-gritty of dealing with parish people.
Anyway, I feel sort of like a loser for not pulling this off, but realistically, what am I trying to prove? Instead I think I'll take the route labeled, "I'm human, not superwoman." I already feel more emotional well-being and more satisfied having made this decision. So on we go. Maybe in the Spring the kids will be older, the family a bit more stable, and Tyler less swamped. We shall see...(also my favorite line in Charlie Wilson's War.)