A postmodern journey of faith...


On Being Bivocational...or in my case, Quadvocational

I've not kept things up here very well...but about 2.5 years ago, we took a position at a small home missions church in Menno, SD. It's a very nice little church (referring to the people...the facility is, well, sad). We had a few initial bumps in the road, but things smoothed out considerably.

I only alluded to it, for reasons unbeknownst to me, but about 5.5 months ago, we had our fourth child, Noelle. My wife has a condition called CMT that sometimes causes her excruciating pain, and this condition is exacerbated by pregnancy and childbirth. We decided after Noelle came that it was time for her to stay home instead of returning to work. A couple of weeks ago, we had a visit with the neurologist and he confirmed that we'd made the right decision, saying that keeping up with 4 kids was plenty for her.

Unfortunately, even though Elicia's job only netted her about $250-$300 a month after we paid for gas, that impact really hurt our family finances.

Back in August last year, I opened a small-time computer repair business hoping to generate some extra income. It's actually gone fairly well for me, but only has brought in between $100 and $200 on average. When Elicia was still working, that was fine and certainly helped out. But now, we find ourselves falling behind. I also deliver a regional shopper newspaper, but we use it as a way to pay allowance to our children. They help, and get paid for their efforts. We make enough to pay for our gas and that's about it. So, right now I'm in the job market again, for the first time seriously in about 8 years. It's scary, I'll tell you.

My family has never been big on taking risks, it seems. A few of us have been, but not very many of us. When I first moved to South Dakota, several people from my family thought I'd cracked. It turned out to be a great choice for me, even though some hard times have come of it. But I finally decided to swallow my fears and jump on this one. And decided to apply at Citibank in Sioux Falls. It's a great company with great benefits. I was worried, because my qualifications and experience are a little unusual--but I decided to take the risk. Last night was my pre-employment screening.

Admittedly, I was very nervous. But as we arrived at Citibank for the session, I decided that I was going to work for this company. I need to work for this company. I feel impressed that this is very important.

Well, a group of us went through the screening. They provided info about Citibank--it's a very generous company. They really take care of their own. And then came the testing. And the waiting. Finally, they began taking people in to go over the screenings. And I waited. And then I waited some more. When I was done with that, I waited for awhile.

I was one of the last two taken in. But the news is this: I'm qualified to move ahead. This is *not* a job offer. But I have an interview today. They could possibly make an offer as soon as today--if not today, then probably by Tuesday.

If you read for this, pray for me. This is a big step for me personally, and for us as a family. This job could get us completely out of "the system," provide me and mine with some much needed insurance coverage, and just generally improve a number of aspects of our lives.

And I can't help but think that a pastor who's not almost constantly stressed about money would be happier. And a happier pastor is definitely a better pastor.



Parents: Beware of the "Choking Game"

As the a parent of 4, this absolutely broke my heart:


It would be so horrible to find your child dead because of pursuing some "thrill." Really, the destructive effects of this are not so different from drugs. If you've not made the jump yet, the choking game is where kids will temporarily cut off the oxygen to their brain for a short period of time in order to pass out for a few seconds. This, apparently, is a thrill--mostly because it's a different sensation.

13 year old Gabriel Mordecai of Paradise, CA died from it.

Be aware of this, as it is becoming more and more prevalent.


Top 10 Tech We Miss: The Newton

When Apple gets things right, it's spectacular (think iPod), but when the company messes up, it's a hoot. The first popular pen-based PDA, the Apple Newton, was big, expensive, and too smart for its britches. Early models tried to interpret handwriting with often amusing results, making words out of users' scrawls that often combined into surreal "Newton Poetry." We miss the Newton because what it thought we meant was often far more interesting than what we were really trying to say.
HILARIOUS! I think I should get one of those...they're still around on eBay.

Read the whole article for the other 9:


OT: Why Do Men Have Nipples?

This looks good...ever wonder why men have nipples? Apparently these guys have an answer for you:

My View of Church: as Servant

I'm learning a tremendous amount these days about how I view church, with some surprises along the way. I just took a survey to determine what model or function I perceive church fulfilling. The results, while not surprising, were certainly interesting. Here's what I came up with:

You scored as Servant Model. Your model of the church is Servant. The mission of the church is to serve others, to challenge unjust structures, and to live the preferential option for the poor. This model could be complemented by other models that focus more on the unique person of Jesus Christ.

Servant Model


Sacrament model


Herald Model


Mystical Communion Model


Institutional Model


What is your model of the church? [Dulles]
created with QuizFarm.com

What is least surprising about this is that I scored 0% on the institutional model. Hmmm...