Murph Notes

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Location: Dublin, Ireland

I am cool.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Here comes the next wave!

So I survived Discovery 2006. Discovery is this way cool event our church does every year. It is like Emmaus or chrysalis but for Middle Schoolers and the High Schools lead and run it. It takes unbelievable amounts of adult and High School volunteers but it is an incredible weekend for the Middle Schoolers and High Schoolers.

tomorrow I leave for D'Iberville, MS for some hurricane relief work with a group of 20 from my church, mostly High Schoolers, and a local reporter who will be embedded with us. It will be another hard stretch of ministry but hard in different ways. I do have to lead but I won't have the politics and church stuff to deal with. I look forward to sheet rock and dust.

My boss advised me to "include, include, include, consult, consult, consult" the other day. She continued by telling me not to "alienate people" and make sure I "honor people's perspectives". One of the toughest things about my job is not working with teens at all. It is leading adults that is tricky. While I love training and leading, I am not good at pretending I enjoy corralling.

Many of my adult volunteers are professionals and experts in what they do. It can be a challenge to help them learn from what we are doing and why. It often takes humility they don't come by easily. So I have to be more humble than I am used to and still find a way to show confidence and point where we are going. This is a very tiny little wire to dance on. Lately, in the throws of major programming, I have not done so well. I find it very difficult when people will not just trust that when I ask them to make a change that I know what I'm doing. It is hard for me, and draining, to always have to explain the reasoning behind everything (seems that way), and then defend and debate that reasoning.

I keep reminding myself this is my first year here and it is going to take time for them to get used to me, let alone take solid direction. I am mentally and emotionally worn out and look forward to hammers and drills.

I am wondering if God called me into Youth ministry because it is the only place He would really be able to deal with all my rough unholy edges.

Saturday, March 18, 2006


I have not blogged in a long time. I have been telling myself the reason is that I just don't have the time and/or energy. I have realized that is not it; I am just intimidated by my blog. How weird is that?

Lately, everytime I have thought of writing I have wanted to pour out feelings and thoughts that are just down right unpleasant. I want to type out of anger, frustrations, depression or discouragement.

The other source of intimidation is that I read so many blogs where my friends are writing very funny stuff or really deep stuff and I feel this need to make sure what I write is up to standards. I don't want to write because I'm concerned it won't be good enough for myself or others.

So do I just start writing and say to heck with what people will think and let all the anger and discouragement fly? But then what will people think of me if that is all they see of me?

Or do I write and obsess over editing and making sure it is up to par?

Perhaps I just overthink such things...

I would love to tell you about my weekend but to do so would include a lot of what I consider complaining. I miss my wife today SOOOOOOOOO much.

11 years ago today was by far the bestest day of my life. It was the day I was joined in matrimony to the coolest woman in the world. Tonya, if you read this today - HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!! I love you and appreciate all of who you are and how you have changed my life in so many wonderful ways. You are my beloved and I adore you.