This summer (2005), I have taken an extra job to pay off a few bills before our first child is born in August. Monday through Thursday, I mow and clean up the softball fields. It's fun! I get to ride around on a tractor to drag the fields, and I get to chalk them.
One of the umpires is my "boss" for this job. He knows I am a youth minister, plus he sees the church van in the parking lot when I'm working.
The other day, Bob and I were cleaning up the restrooms. Ladies, can I just say something? You are more disgusting than men! I couldn't believe that I was picking up WADDED UP (and USED) toilet tissue from the floor! Bob had to pick up a feminine product from the floor! I know this is a blanket statement, and that most women are cleaner than antibacterial soap, but help your gender look better! Teach your sisters how to pick up after themselves!
Anyways, as Bob and I were picking up, our boss approached outside. As I picked up a pair of underwear I yelled, "SICK!!!"
When we emerged, the boss was standing right there. He said, "Yeah, women are gross, man!" Then he went on to say, "I thought Christians don't curse!" Apparently he thought I had said a different "S" word!
I didn't think anything about it until a few minutes later...after he was gone! I wanted to defend myself! I wanted to let him know that he was right...Christians don't curse! I was afraid that HE was a Christian, and that I had let him down!
Yesterday, he came back and we installed a new home plate. He surprised me when he said that several ball players were b**ching (complaining) about the condition of the fields. Did he just curse right in front of me?! Perhaps the other day he was not pointing the finger...perhaps he was wanting to hear me say I was not perfect! (Even though I didn't curse!) Maybe he wanted to hear that even Christians sometimes struggle with stuff!
Here's the best part of all: This job has helped me get out from behind church walls! I NEED to get "back into the world!" As a youth minister, I NEED to be where my teens are! I NEED to hear that stuff! Isn't that where Jesus would be? If any other youth ministers read this, go and do likewise! We NEED to be out there, not locked up in our offices!
I may not be good at cursing, but the cool thing is...our boss talked MORE to us after that incident than he ever had before! Who knows? Maybe soon we can talk about Jesus...and maybe NOW he will listen...because he knows we are real, and that we struggle, too.