I am off of work on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Those are the best days of the week for me. I get to have “family fun days” with my wife and little girl. It is a little odd trying to get out of the routine on Tuesday, then back into it on Wednesday, and then out of it again on Thursday. Tuesday is usually a bust. I am so exhausted by that point that I usually just sleep until about 9 a.m. or so (which is about 4 or so hours after I normally wake up).
So why do I bring this up? Well, I was just thinking about it. I ran into one of my former co-workers from SU the other day. She asked how things were going with the Village and all. I told her that things are moving along and that the program is growing and giving opportunity to help even more guys each week. Then she asked if I ever missed my old desk job. I told her honestly, “Yes. Some days I do.” Then I went on to explain that when I have just put in the 75th hour of the work week and you still have another day or so before another off day…I miss the time clock. I miss the simplistic day-to-day routine of knowing what I was going to do that day. Monday would always include responding to the e-mails and returning phone calls from over the weekend, a little bit of filing, processing consolidation forms and the list goes on. The best part was that at the end of my 7.5 hour work day, if I didn’t finish…I could just pick it up the next business day. Then my former co-worker asked me a question that I was not in any way ready for…”Are you okay? Are you sick? Do you sleep anymore?” At the time, I could answer all of those questions with one word…”No.” I was not okay. I actually was not sick even though she was talking about terminally ill kind of sick, and, No, I rarely sleep anymore.
I got pretty bitter after that. It came through and out of my work that I was frustrated and bitter. I got to the point that I was so short-tempered that the guys would just avoid me altogether. Just in case you didn’t know…that isn’t a good thing. That is surely not productive and shows absolutely NO evidence of Christ in my heart or in my life. So…about that time, vacation came around on the calendar. It was a much needed break.
God really convicted me about my heart and my attitude about the work issues. I still have a long way, but one of the guys actually came up to me today and mentioned that he noticed that I was much calmer and gentle on the phone. He asked if I would mind if he just dealt with me over the phone from now on. I told him about the bitterness and how I had allowed my heart to be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin (Heb 3). I told him that while I was on vacation that God really convicted me of my heart’s condition toward these guys and their habits. He just simply nodded. Then he said something that really just set me back…Just really encouraged me. He said,
“I have been praying for you. I know that you are under a lot of stress. I just figured the best way to help you would be to pray for you…especially while you were on your vacation.”
Thanks LJ for the prayers. We all need them. And most important, thank you, God for making my heart soft and pliable through this time and this work.