Nuts, cheese, crazy pills, and finding “squirrels” in the Temple.

Since the local onset of social distancing and attempting to continue the church’s work during a pandemic, I’ve been video-conferencing daily with my Executive Pastor, Director of Finance, and my Director of Facilities & Community Partnerships.  For this season, I’ve dubbed the four of us the “Executive Committee.”  During our daily video-chats we check in with each other, share what seems to be important for the day, offer mutual encouragement and support, and make the decisions that need making.  Honestly, though I certainly don’t prefer this working arrangement, or the reason for it, I think we’re actually doing a better job staying focused and connecting than we did when we were working in adjacent offices!

And, we laugh, which is much needed these days.

As we can only see each other from the waste up, someone frequently asks who is wearing pants.  We NEVER ask that in the office!  Though I assume we all are, thankfully, no one has stood up during any of our meetings!

Yesterday, one of us had a cockatiel sitting on his head, as we discussed church finances. I won’t name names.  A basset hound also made a brief video appearance.

Today’s conversation quickly devolved, with references to a squirrel’s nut in the movie, “Ice Age,” cheese in the book, Who Moved My Cheese, and Will Ferrell’s line from the movie “Zoolander,” “I feel like I’m taking crazy pills!”  I’ll intentionally forgo the “whys” and “whats” of how these applied to today’s conversation!  Suffice it to say, they made perfect sense, at the time, at least to the four of us!

Then, I was quite sure one of us said, “It’s like finding the squirrels in the Temple.”  Turns out, he was making a serious Biblical reference to the Jewish Priest Hilkiah finding the SCROLLS in the Temple, in 2 Kings 22, during the reign of King Josiah, leading to great national reforms.  Ministry professionals referencing scrolls in the Temple makes a lot more since than finding squirrels in the Temple! But, after you’ve referenced nuts, cheese, and crazy pills as apt metaphors for today’s church business, why not squirrels in the Temple, too?

Somedays, it really does feel like we have squirrels in the Temple!  Sometimes – many days, in fact – it feels like I must have taken crazy pills – pandemic, or not!

And, that’s just another day of serious ministry work, in the age of coronavirus – nuts, cheese, crazy pills, and squirrels!

What’s the point?  Who knows!?!?  Is there a point?  I really have no idea.  But, it was good for a few laughs.

Maybe, the point of my sharing is this:  during times like these – CRAZY times like these! – we need laughter, and good people to laugh with.  Even during a VERY serious pandemic, we all need a laugh or two, just to keep from crying, which I’ve also done.  Amidst the challenges of church finances, staying connected virtually, facility issues, navigating various and sundry personality issues, ever-changing news reports and directives, and wide-spread generalized pandemic-related fears and angst, moments of silliness are a welcome and needed release!

So, here’s to ZOOM meetings, filled with nuts, cheese, crazy pills and squirrels, and good colleagues to work and laugh with!

Who are you laughing with?


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