I was laying in bed last night...okay I was tossing and turning in bed last night and I finally admitted to myself...it's time for a new mattress. Problem is I don't have money to buy a new mattress. Oh, I can take it out of my savings but I've already had to dip in there this year (car) and I need new tires which will eat away at another chunk and...sigh. The hope of a new mattress seemed dim.
This afternoon Fabulous Administrative Assistant said "let's go to lunch." It's a regular Wednesday occurrence but this time we went somewhere and took time to sit and eat. We had barely sat down when she said "I have something to tell you." I never like it when people start a conversation with that sentence. My mind immediately races to the millions of possibilities of what it might be and I always tense up. This time, though, the sentences that followed made me start to get teary. Seems like there are some people in the congregation who sent in a donation specifically for me. A big donation, a love gift. Oh.my.gosh. My first thought was "I can buy a new mattress!" And then I started trying to figure out who gave the gift, of course.
Tonight as I was sitting around with some of my students after group I was sharing about the gift, not in a bragging way but in a "Can you believe this??!!" way and student Z looked at me and said "You can get a new radio for your car!" Do you know that didn't occur to me at all. But the minute student Z said it the minute I realized I could! No more having 6 CD's held hostage by the in dash CD player. Oh, just the thought brings me joy.
Of course along with the joy and the excitement and the pondering (seriously I'm going to try to figure this out!) comes the realization that I've been holding a pretty serious chip on my shoulder as well. And it's time for the chip fall off. It's too easy in Ministry to feel overlooked, taken for granted, overworked and under appreciated. I've been feeling all of those emotions and more in the last couple of years and it's been taking a toll. So tonight, I'm feeling appreciated, yet also repentant. It's time to let go of the chip.