So I feel like I should do a blog. It's been, what, 10 days? Surely something's happened in the last ten days in this fantastic life of mine that I travelled to the other side of the world to live that's worth sharing?
*racks brain for said interestingness*. Well. My money from that cheque finally came through after a bazillion complications. I've been saying that word a lot recently. It's fun. 'Bazillion'. It means two zillion. Zillion isn't a word.
Darn it. Microsoft Word reckons it is. I guess I have to take that back then.
Anyway. I GOT TO BUY FOOD!! That's seriously ridiculously exciting. I can't believe how little I even considered money and how pretty fundamental it is to everyone's lives before I came here. If I've learned one thing it's that living on nil money is horrible. I seriously don't know how I'd have coped without being so linked into the Church and having people remind me every day what it's really all about. I'm ridiculously grateful for that. And I'm still working on that trust thing. God always comes through in the 11th hour (like, if I didn't pay off my rent debt this week I'd have been suspended on Friday. Thanks God!!), but that's just it - He ALWAYS comes through. He just stretches my faith further and further every time, knowing I can't quite get my brain to work unless He does that.
Stretching. That's something I want to talk about.
So on Wednesday(ish? maybe?) evening of the week before last - the day before my last blog post - I got given a task. I was to recruit leaders for the 'Mega Prayer Night' on the Tuesday coming, preferable about 40. I didn't have a lot of notice, obviously. But the usual process was to make announcements in lectures, asking for student volunteers.
Now, our intake is pretty big, so I was pretty darned scared just about talking to my year. So I tiptoe up to our lecturer (who also just happens to be campus principal) and ask in my nicest (and scaredest) voice: "Hi - would it be possible to make an announcement for Hillsong Kids in the lecture today? We need leaders for the Mega Prayer Night on Tuesday."
Catrina is one of those people that can totally see right through you anyway, but my friends later said I looked really scared as I went up to ask her, so it probably really obvious how scared I was. Still, her reasons were pretty valid - she already had a load of announcements to make that day so she couldn't really. "What day is it?" she asked another staff member. Catrina is actually one of my favourite lecturers, 'cause her brain jumps all over the place and she inserts little side notes everywhere when she talks and is totally at home with her crazy personality. It's awesome. It's who she was made to be. Anyway, after a brief conversation she asks if we could make the announcement in Chapel and explains quickly how I need to do that.
Now, that Thursday was INSANE - I was actually in charge of the Early Childhood programme for another event that evening (which I'd also needed to get volunteers for, and someone had dropped out that day... stretching!) so I didn't get in until pretty late that day and then suddenly remembered I had to send that email about the announcement for Chapel, which I did super quickly when I got in - but I guess because it was so last minute, or for some reason anyway, the announcement didn't get made. So I had to round up as many volunteers as I could by word of mouth (and via a group event on Facebook, which I thought was quite clever but, I guess because of the impersonal nature of it, wasn't all that effective) and email, etc.
I also happened to be preaching to our 3-5 year olds on the Sunday morning after that, which is really cool - but meant I had the prep to do for that too. That Friday was busy too, which left not a lot of time to devote to all this responsibility I suddenly found myself in.
And then, just as things were starting calm down on the next Wednesday - after the Mega Prayer Night, and I ended up with enough volunteers in the end, when my specialist lowered the numbers I had to get (which I was so happy about - she was really understanding) - I got a call saying I was leading the team the next morning for Sisterhood (which is our women's ministry) because my team leader was sick. The team was Sisterhood Cafe, and we basically sorted out food on Thursday mornings to sell to women. Only this week it was a special event, so we were doing a barbeque in a park down the road, which the women were walking too, so I actually had quite a bit to do. And I was going to be looking after money, too, to buy the food.
The next morning my alarm didn't go off, so I was late myself anyway (not catastrophically, but enough that the day didn't start off so well); then my other team member didn't show up, so we left Church late. I managed to stay a bit more calm through all this than I might otherwise have done, which hopefully shows growth, but let me get back to my point: stretching.
It's something that comes up quite a lot here, and something I certainly experienced that week. It's not all that comfortable at the time - you know when a pair of skinny jeans (Australians LOVE them) are a bit tight, but they've got elastic in them so they'll go on. After a while you find they don't hurt quite so much when you're wearing them, because they've stretched. Actually, at your current weight they're pretty comfy.
Well, last week wasn't all that comfortable. I was pretty stressed. I haadn't had to do much like this before, and definitely not all at once. But I came out stretched. It actually wasn't more than I could handle. It was probably pushing on the edges of what I was capable of right then, but now it's a bit wider. I can juggle a few things. I'm growing, and that's what I should be doing here. It's what I'm going to be doing over the next semester, and it's what I'll be doing over the next year and a half at least (as I'm trying to trust God for, placing it all in His hands).
And, very excitingly, I'm going to be stretched a bit more this weekend as I'm MCing this Sunday in the 5pm - that's the service I do 5-11s in. MCing is basically keeping the service running from up front, introducing people's parts, keeping to schedule and running videos - etc. So there's a fair bit to remember... I probably ought to have a good look at the runsheet before then and get to know it properly. I think I'm going to have a helping hand for my first time so keep me to time properly and make sure I don't run out of things to say. Plan: be myself...