Thursday, September 22, 2011

What I've Learned About Myself the Past Week or So...

I'm officially leaving October 6th.

This has led to kind of a crunch time for me.

Which in turn has led me to discover some things...

I work best under pressure. Okay, not really pressure because I get really stressed. But I've discovered that I need to have firm deadlines if I ever hope to accomplish anything. In college for example, I knew when things were due all the time so I could start them ahead, work on them in increments and get them done. When I don't have firm deadlines for myself, I'm not working on things consistently and therefore nothing gets done.

I like to be organized. I'm not one of those obsessive-compulsive people where everything has to be perfectly neat. I get piles of stuff lying around and such. I tell people I'm not messy, my form of organization is just different. But actually, I've learned that there is this toleration point where I can't stand things being messy and so I have to clean before I can sit down and work.

Lists = Good. Sometimes I get overwhelmed. Therefore I am better if I sit down and write out a list. Sometimes it's a list of everything I want/need to accomplish that day and sometimes it's a list of what I have to do and when it has to be done. In either case, it gives me a tangible visible way to break everything down and I feel a sense of accomplishment when I cross things off.

I am more left-brained than I'd like to admit. I take pride in my right-brainedness and non-analyticalness. But honestly, the whole making lists thing is totally left-brained. I remember that question being on those little personality test things (that was before I started making lists). And honestly, being a little left-brained helps me get stuff done. So it's actually a blessing in disguise.

Being a missionary and being human are not mutually exclusive. I know, this seems kind of dumb, but I'm discovering something about being a church worker. There's pressure there. I mean, my goodness, people have paid good money to support me on this trip. They put a lot of faith and trust in me. It's quite a burden. Especially since we're dealing with spiritual matters. It's kind of terrifying. You sit there thinking "Oh my goodness, I don't want to mess this up!" But at the same time, it does get messed up. So here I am with a dilemma. I want to be as perfect as possible because I have an image to uphold, but at the same time I do a really good job of royally messing everything up. So the last couple of days I've thought about it and decided "This isn't going to work and so we're just going to forget it." Not that I'm not trying. We should always try to be more Christ-like. That is our goal as Christians after all. But the idea is that I try to grow in the faith and do my best and God's grace will cover the rest. It's hard for me to let go like that not even going to pretend and say it is. Because there's a part of me that's like "I've done some really dumb things and made some really bad mistakes in my life. How will grace ever cover what I've done?"

It's like the preacher at the congregation I visited yesterday said. "He will take you back. Do we deserve it? No. But it's okay because He loves us anyway and he will take us back. " That's encouraging to me.

Anytime you work in the church, there is a standard people hold you too. The key is understanding within yourself that the standard is man-made and you're no better than anyone else. Once you realize this, you can let it go and more effectively live life for Him.

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