Friday, September 24, 2010

Losing Hair, Gaining Much

Supposedly Luther once wrote, "I have so much to do (today) that I should spend the first three hours in prayer."  Well, I have so much to do today that I should spend ... well, a bit of time ... in blogging.

Tomorrow is our St. Baldrick's event.  At this point, sitting down to be shaved sounds like bliss.  At that point, everything will be underway, the work will be done.  All done but the shaving and sweeping.

This has been quite the experience for me, and frankly, one that took more "bravery" than agreeing to shave my head.  I organized this event.  

The tests they make you take, if you're pursuing ministry, all show me to be an extravert, and most people who know me would probably agree with that assessment.  Certainly The very introverted Husband would.

But being extraverted doesn't necessarily mean that one feels comfortable contacting strangers, asking for favors.  Come those days, and I was a bunny wabbit in the headlights.

I've done it now.  It's not huge, but we will surpass our goals. I asked, and got a bunch of firefighters and a venue and some people willing to shave their heads.

Actually, scratch that last part.  Other than Father Mac and the firefighters, I didn't ask anyone to shave their heads.

And there's a pretty good lesson there.

People talk about leadership.  If you're going into ministry, they want to know, "Will people follow you?"

No.  I don't believe so.

I don't believe people follow a person.  I believe people follow a mission, an idea, a goal.  If they believe in the idea, and they trust the person, they will walk together toward that goal.

No one would shave their heads just because I was.  No one.

But they believe in the cause.  Many of them have heard a story.  For some of them, they heard Little Warrior's story.  And so they said, of their own volition, "I will shave my head."  Each one of them has their own story, and their own reason to do this.  They dared to think, "I can make a difference."

Every one of them is a hero.

I have gained so much in this.  The next time, I will feel comfortable -- well, more comfortable -- going and asking for help.  Because the world taught me that I can.  I was not slapped down.  I was not made to feel like a fool.  The world -- you -- said, "Great idea."  Here's a venue.  Here's some money.  Here's some publicity.  Here's my head - shave away.

I have been "emboldened by faith."

Will I do this particular event again?  Mmm, I don't know.  I picked this time to stand for a cause dear to my heart, childhood cancer research, because it might be the last time I can.  I do CPE next summer -- my hair will be grown out.  Next, if all goes well, comes graduation, internship ... I have no wish for this to become my identity, "Cancer Mom."  I am grateful to those who take up the mantle, and I will always carry my membership card in my wallet, but I don't believe it is my calling to always wear the tshirt. 

I have another mission and another ministry.  Very bluntly and with total humility to the task, I feel called to love the hell out of the world.

This was just one step.



boston unitarian said...

God bless, and you have my (old Lutheran) prayers. BU

Kelly KH said...

My heart is totally filled with love for you and yours! You are a cancer mom, but so much more than that, and you are a wonderful example of bringing your ministry to the world and leading with your heart! I was thinking of you as soon as I woke up this morning and am sending you love and all good thoughts today!