Wednesday, September 25, 2013

God's Grace for a Back-Stabbing Skeez

Those of you who have spent more than fifteen minutes in a local church, are probably on a committee.  Church committees were probably the poster children for recruitment long before Uncle Sam ever pointed a finger.  It seems to me, though, they have to be.  I mean, let's face it, the pay isn't great -- "$0? Hmm, $0.  Let me think about that."  No experience necessary.  "So, what you're saying is, I know nothing about architecture or structural integrity, and I'm perfect for the job?! What's that? And so was the guy before me? Hey, would you mind if we stepped outside?"  Your selflessness and exceptional efforts will be carefully scrutinized by a committee of folks who do little more than sit around and carefully scrutinize the volunteer service of others, and then tell their friends, and they tell two friends, and so on, and so on...

So, when the church I was attending was desperate for committee members to organize a local event, I figured I would do my good deed, and sign up.  The chairperson was a friend of mine as well, so I wanted to help her out.  The event was five months away, and though it wasn't a huge endeavor, I'm one of those people who cannot stand waiting until the last minute.  (Funny how the girl who did her homework at 2AM, or in the bathroom as she was brushing her teeth, or on the bus, or in homeroom has become this neurotic individual.)  Plus, as far as I could tell, I was the one and only person to put their name on the dotted line, so to speak. 

Three weeks later, I had heard nothing.  So, I figured my friend, the committee chairperson, was having a difficult time getting the ball rolling.  I emailed her a list of ideas -- creative ways to make our event a huge success!

A week later, when I asked her if she'd received the email, "yes" was her response. 
"So, what did you think?"
"I have to run them past the pastor's committee."
"OK!"  Headway!  I can be so naïve.

Two weeks after that, the answer was the same.  And two weeks after that?  You guessed it.

So, I took another look at those suggestions.  In silence, self-evaluation, right?  I tweeked, and cut, and embellished, until those "creative ways to make our event a huge success" were "ingenious ideas to bring the house down!"  Ok, maybe not, but they were a little more user friendly, not as daunting or work intensive, but just as fabulous.

Reality set in when, eighteen days after that, I received the email stating that the following Sunday, the committee would be rolling out the plans for the event, and one of the other members had, at the last meeting, graciously offered to do the presentation.  At the last meeting?!  What meeting? What other committee member? I thought we were friends?  Suffice to say, it all went downhill from there.  I confronted Ms. Chairperson, my friend, "my sister," who constantly talked over me through the entire ordeal, who completely dismissed my feelings, and deftly turned it around to make it seem as if I were out of my mind and somehow, very pathetic

"Why didn't you say something sooner?" 
"Oh, my fault, I didn't assume the worst about you weeks ago."

Come event day, I was placated with a job in the kitchen.  Friendship over.  "Sister," a backstabbing skeez.

SO, here is the question -- one with which I too often struggle:

Fast forward to Glory.  The crowd is going wild.  Jesus is in the house!  Everybody is dancing.  Hands up!  Happier than a camel on hump day.  I look over, and there she is.  Does my face instantly drop?  Do I feel the urge to rip off her nail tips, welling up inside me?  "How did she get here?!" 

Of course, I know the answer to all of the above, this is a God thing -- NOT a Judi thing, after all.  But we all so want to think we act the part, all the time -- and others should, too.  The answer is grace.  God's grace for me.  God's grace for backstabbing skeezes -- even though I can be one.
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