Thursday, May 8, 2008

The Monumental Journey Towards Ordination - Volume 5

When last we joined our web slinging wonder…

Where was I? Oh yes, I was telling about going to church in downtown Austin and crossing paths with my good friend Tina Carter. I just can’t say enough how important finding that worshipping community was for my journey. It was just about the time I started worshipping there that lots of things started happening in my life. But let me back up.

So, how was it that a boy from New York State who never went to church as a child, ended up going to church in Austin, Texas in the first place? In case you haven’t heard or read it, I was a radio disc jockey prior to all this. The end of that career is really all tied up in my call to ministry, so let me tell a bit about that. I was working for a rock radio station WZZO in Allentown, Pennsylvania. I had the afternoon slot, 3-7 and the coolest boss on the entire planet. It was a couple years into this job that I began my life as a seeker. I started doing odd things. (Odd for me anyway.) I moved out my apartment and got a house in the country outside of town. I drove all the way to Ohio to buy a very particular Labrador Retriever. I started hiking and backpacking. I became more and more dissatisfied with my very cool job that gave me a very cool income. Not knowing what else to do, I started sending out demo tapes and resumes. To make a long story short, I finally got an offer to move to Austin to direct commercial production for the top 40 station in town KHFI. I took the job since, at the time, I had two sisters living in Austin and my parents spent a lot of time there. I hated the job immediately. It wasn’t actually a bad job. It was even easier than the old one and I had plenty of time to hang out in Austin. But it was clear that my dissatisfaction was not going to be fulfilled by a change of scenery. I continued doing things that were odd for me. I stayed with my sister for a while until I found a double wide trailer for rent on a big piece of land outside town. It was really peaceful. But I was not feeling much inner peace. I was seeking something in my life and I didn’t know what it was. I had a friend who had become an eclectically spiritual person. She thought my issue was a spiritual one and she started sending me books on spirituality, and I thought they were sort of interesting but odd.

It took me a while to remember the timeline of the next part. At some point, the irritation inside me just got overwhelming. I was deeply unhappy and I just couldn’t figure out why. I didn’t feel lonely. I didn’t feel depressed. I was just empty. So the oddest thing happened. I felt this desire to pray. And I had no idea where it came from. And so I did something I had never really done before. I got down on my knees in my bedroom (cause that’s how people pray on T.V.) and I prayed. And I prayed the oddest prayer. I said, “God, show me the path.” It felt weird even saying that and especially saying it to someone who didn’t appear to be in the room.

I did that for a few days. And then stuff started to happen. I noticed that I passed a church on my way to work everyday. Oak Hill United Methodist Church sounded fairly harmless. I decided to go. It was terrifying but it was good. I went for a while and I kept praying. And then the next step became clear. I needed to quit my job and go camping for a while. And oddly enough it was a part of that trip that led me back to Pennsylvania that led me back to Austin and really got things moving, but more on that next time! And then, I swear I will get back to the part about ordination!


blog comments powered by Disqus