So tomorrow is a first, for me.
One the THE firsts that I was not looking forward to in my internship.
My first funeral.
That I'm doing BY MYSELF!
Funerals were probably THE thing at the top of my list of "Things I am Definitely Not Looking Forward to Doing." I even talked with my supervising pastor about that, asking him that I get a chance to sit in with him as he meets with a family and goes about getting ready for a funeral. Just last week I asked him about that.
Then I go on the jr high youth event (you remember, the one with cheeseball girl) and I come home and go to contemporary worship leader practice and Supervising says "Are you ready?"
"For what?" I say.
"Oh, am I helping?"
"No, you're doing it."
[i think that was my literal inner monologue at that moment. Word for word. I kid you not.]
So yeah, I had to call the son of the woman who passed away. Arrange a meeting with him and his two sisters who were flying in from Oregon and Hawaii for the funeral. So I did that, after much pacing around the office and some freaking out. Once I got that out of the way I began freaking out about meeting with them at the funeral home this evening and then the sermon I'm supposed to preach for tomorrow. Leading the service won't be too bad. It's all there written out for you in the wonderful Occasional Services book. But the sermons aren't. The sermons have to come from me. And I didn't know this woman. I'd never met her or any members of her family. The funeral home called and asked Supervising if he'd be willing to do it. I was out of town. He volunteered me.
So about 20 minutes ago I finally finished my sermon. After writing a little bit, then telling myself I needed to go to bed. Then rolling around in bed unable to stop worrying about my sermon. So I got up and wrote some more. Then I went back to bed. Then I rolled around some more, unable to stop worrying about my sermon. So then I got up and wrote some more. And now I think I'm done. So that relieves some of the pressure. There's still the whole going to the funeral home tomorrow, and then the service and, oh yeah, PREACHING THE SERMON. But I think it is a pretty okay sermon. The woman liked to garden, so I picked a part of the Gospel of John that talks about how a grain of wheat must first die and be buried in the earth before it will bear any fruit.
But now I can't breathe out of one nostril (yeah, that's right, throw into this mix that I'M GETTING SICK), so I took my last decongestant thingie a little bit ago. But I seem to be on one of my "HOLY COW I'M SO NERVOUS" kicks that I can't relax and go to bed.
What? You have a nervous problem? (I can hear you asking that) And yes, yes I do.
I'm the guy who, after moving to a new town and school the summer between my sophomore and junior year of high school psyched myself out so much that I got a nervous condition where I couldn't eat without puking it up immediately afterwards. My stomach was just so upset that I couldn't keep anything down. So we went to the doctor and he prescribed me a pill which I've since convinced myself that it was probably just a placebo, because my sickness was totally in my head. Which would then only make sense that the cure was in my head, as well.
Anyway, I'm going to go try to lay down and get some sleep. Please remember me at about 10:30 central time. I'll need your thoughts and prayers!
Oh, and in case you're wondering, the coverage of the 1000th visitor blog party is almost done. In case you couldn't tell, I've had OTHER THINGS on my mind...