Tuesday, December 08, 2015

December 8, 2015

It's been a bit since my last journal entry because I've been busy writing my first novel, and then because winter hit Portland, forcing me to keep busy giving shelter to those who have none.

After September and October, I was feeling great.  I've achieved the balance I desired and I began losing weight. The rest and spiritual renewal was life transforming, and I've been doing great.

Until I'm not.

I started winding down in November, and my spiritual director and I scratched our head over it until we realized that my exhaustion came back just as I was spending time writing almost 2000 words a day on a novel.  Yeah, that exhausts a person.

In the midst of this, I had a terrible meeting with church leadership, wanting to cut back on our ministry with the homeless, without discussing anything from the homeless point of view.

Right on the heels of me finishing my 50,000 words (not quite done with the first draft of my novel), a cold snap and an ice storm came in, forcing us to be open during the day for a full week and one overnight opening.

Then the city of Gresham gave us a fine for 350 dollars for "unlawful camping", which they could fine us every day.

And I got word that a police representative is going around to neighborhood meetings telling them that he is holding me responsible for everything that the homeless do in our area.

Good feeling gone.

I mean, I get it.  This is real life.  This is the job I chose.  This is the difficulties of ministring to a group of the outcast, the rejected, the desperately needy.

But I am back in that torn place of needing to help those who are desperate, to defend them, but not having the energy to do so.

People want to have meetings, but I just want some space, some quiet, some time to be left by myself.  People want me to lead, to take charge, to fight the good fight and I just want to hide.

It's not so bad right now.  I'm just tired.  But I know where this is heading.  I've been there before.

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