June 18th, 2010

BIG PICTURE: The reality is, I’ve allowed this sabbatical to degrade over the last week. I am not ashamed or particularly “broken” over it. I am disappointed. It feels like failure. I’m not working out at all. Even morning office has been eroded (something that was strong when I began). Saying Evening Office is a complete and utter failure. Brenda and I did it three times maybe. Without the pressure of the class work, I feel reduced to my lowest common denominator and that is frankly unmotivated and lazy. I certainly can’t plead being tired and needing a break.

I borrowed Bill’s motorcycle and brought Robyn out to the beach with me for a couple of hours. I finished MBE (more on that later) we walked on the beach, read a little and talked intentionally about God. Went to McDonald’s on our way back. More good conversation. I don’t regret any of that at all. I guess I’m just surprised that I’m still essentially 14 years old and will become bored and lazy when the guard rails are lifted. It was the same in 1989/90 when I was working alone.

Where I begin to sink into near-depression is when I consider how my passion for God decays right along with everything else. I’m sorry, Lord. I really I am…but why would I try to lie to you?

Please forgive me.

Robyn played the part of Junior Prophet today as I explained my weekly selection of a stone. Not being aware of the things I’m going through, and quite matter-of-factedly, as she balanced upon a piece of drift wood she suggested that I name the stone, “Shrug..ya’ know like a shoulder shrug: Whatever”

She nailed it.

Week 7 is a Stone called Shrug.

CLASS WORK: I will replace news about academics in this segment with news about writing. Rick approved a plan for me to work on my writing project code named “The Beach”. I will endeavor to take a workman-like approach to it when I return from vacation. In the meantime, I have a VERY rough outline and the makings of what SHOULD be a good story IF I can write well. I don’t know if I really can.

READ/RITE/REFLECT; MBE: As I mentioned, I finished the book. It never rose beyond those segments back on Day 11 or so. He tells a few anecdotes under the chapter heading “EDGY MBE’s” about how they have people in the their congregation who SMOKE! and it’s okay! They have people who have used DRUGS just before coming to a worship service! And there are even PROSTITUTES in their midst! GASP!

I can only mock him to some extent, because I’m very glad that he is building a place that DOES welcome everyone, and my understanding is, most evangelical churches in America WOULD be scandalized by those things.

I’m so arrogant.

BUT despite my arrogance: this kind of story telling does little for me. It’s like telling chilling combat tales to a soldier who’s in a fox-hole being shot at..

I’m drawn once again to the puzzle pieces one of which IS this MBE thing and another which is Social action which links directly to it. Then there is the 5 Year plan with it’s Performing Arts Center Coffee shop. Potential revenue streams…but who am I kidding: even a non-business guy like me recognizes that a performing arts venue/coffee shop in Marysville Washington will, even if operated FLAWLESSLY, be a money PIT for at least several years…and THAT is optimistic!

There has to be something more…but what!? The hotel thing doesn’t ring my bell. There’s little need for it here. The only reason to stay overnight in Marysville is the casino, and they have it covered and we couldn’t target that demographic in good conscience anyway.

The old Gotschock’s at Marysville Mall. That mall has been a black hole swallowing businesses for years….God, what could be done there?

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