Friday, October 2, 2009
Upside Down Living
No, the video doesn't have anything to do with the message this week. If you can make a tie-in, let me know. It's just pure, mindless fun - my dog rounding up his squeaky toy sheep. He's an Australian Shepherd, after all. Herd he must.
I don't have lots to tell you about the message this week (skip to the last paragraph if you want...). Hopefully that will change by Sunday, but there's lots of work to be done on it before then if that's to happen. Instead I'll fill you in on yesterday. Some plans for a Season of Service meeting fell through due to a slight dental emergency in our family. Becca had a filling (her first cavity ever) about three weeks ago. Although the dentist said it was a "small" filling, somehow a nerve in the tooth was nicked, it seems. She started having pain a couple of days after the filling and it didn't go away. We thought it was just normal kind of stuff, but when it intensified this week I called back in to get an appointment. That call, in itself, was an experience. I called the "emergency appointment" line and talked to a young woman who asked me a series of questions about Becca's pain, when it started, what it was like, etc. When I was done she put me on hold for awhile, then came back and said,
"Okay, we can get you in on the 12th of October."
"The 12th?" I said. "Hmm. That's a long way off. What if she can't wait that long?"
"Then you call back in and make an emergency appointment."
"I thought that this was the emergency appointment line."
"Based on your answers to the questions I asked, I scheduled the appointment."
"But I asked for an emergency appointment."
"Sir, I'm just following the protocol."
She started getting a bit snippy at this point, and I guess did too. Come to think of it, I probably got snippy first. She was, after all, doing her job. My job was to get my kid in to see someone who could help her.
"Well, I think my daughter probably has an abcess tooth developing and she can't wait until the 12th. Can we get in as soon as possible?"
"Let me check. Please hold."
After a few minutes, during which I contemplated how I would rant and rave until they squeezed us in, she came back.
"How's tomorrow at 9:45 AM?"
"That would be great. Thank you."
And so, to make this long story shorter, we got in. Indeed it turned out that Becca had an abscess. So the poor kid started her root canal yesterday. And just to make it even lousier, it was her 17th birthday. Poor kid. She's feeling better today.
Oh yeah, the sermon for Sunday - it's about living in an upside down world. We're looking at Jesus' Sermon on the Mount in Luke 6. We normally read this message as if it really isn't doable at all. Pie in the sky wishful thinking that will only apply in heaven. But we forget that the problems Jesus mentions here aren't going to be part of the reality in the new heaven and new earth that God restores. So it is about living these ways now. Which, of course, we don't do so well. What would it look like and be like to live as Jesus describes in this passage? That's where we're going in the message this week.