July 21, 2008

on being freak-ish

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I'm having one of those moments where I'm feeling a little sorry for myself. So, readers beware...

We get a lot of 'pats on the back' for how we live and what we do, "What you're doing is so important," or "We need your voice and what you're doing to be heard and seen." This kind of thing is pretty common. It feels good at first. But the problem is, these people rarely want to chip in and help out. They like what they see. The idea of young(ish) people trying to live in radical ways as a result of the Gospel of Jesus is exciting to them. But they don't want any direct affiliation and they don't want to help out. Just come and watch, and then go get a mocha on the way home to a carpeted home built after 1980. (Damn, I miss carpet. I don't know why, but I do. Hardwood floors in an old house are a great aesthetic but... damn, I miss carpet.)

I end up feeling like we are a bit of a freak show. People like to come and look and feel excited by the experience but they go home and we're still here. Then add the recent flurry of "Claibornagains" that like to come and peek in at what we're up to and then go back to their justice-in-a-bracelet-and-a-t-shirt world... [sigh]. I guess we're clearly not "irresistible" enough. Pats on the back don't pay the bills. Coming over for one Sunday night doesn't give someone a clue what it is like to try and live like this together for years. We're here for the long haul. People say we're "cool" but I've about heard enough of that. I don't care if we're cool. Cool doesn't pay the bills. We don't do this to be "cool". I've never desired to be cool. I just want to follow Jesus into his radical, wonderful dream and take others along for the ride. Currently we are $3,000 short of making our budget. Part of me isn't too worried. Every month it works out somehow. But, that's only one part of me. We leave in a few days on a road trip that we are hoping will pay for itself. Along the way, we hope to learn a few things, see what God is doing elsewhere and teach some folks a few things we've learned along the way. I should be excited right now. Instead, I'm frustrated and stressed out... I apologize for the outburst. It isn't directed at anyone in particular... I'm just tired of feeling like a freak show.

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