Tuesday, February 16, 2010

What is my identity?

Something triggered in me today...I was watching tv (ha!) and a woman was lamenting that she feels the world identifies her as a mother. Maybe not a big deal seeing as she is a mother, but she felt this title of Mother was all that she was anymore, that it is all-encompassing and the world sees none of the other things she might have to offer....I can't relate to that, of course but it made me wonder about what my "Identity" might be. What does the world identify me as? I don't know. I don't know if I am anything anymore...I was a student for so long and it was easy to fall into that roll of high school student or college student. Now I am a wife, but would anyone think "There is Melissa, she is a wife." as their overall impression of me? Do I have a title? I feel a little lost thinking about these kinds of things. I wonder what aspect of my life overpowers all else to the extent it is my identity to the outside world...I think there has to be something. Maybe. But, maybe not. Maybe I am just me. Maybe I get to be "There is Melissa, she is herself." Maybe? Hmm.

I had a bit of an interesting morning. An older couple, Bill and Stella, have stepped in as interim leaders of our church. Neither of them are pastors as it turns out there aren't many people studying in the Uniting Church to be ministers anymore...it's rather sad how many congregations are having to close their doors forever. It feels like the church is dying. :( I don't identify as a follower of the Uniting Church's doctrine and, in fact, I disagree with a lot of things on that front...but how unfair that even this congregation here in Moranbah is fighting every day not only to find a minister who is willing to come to this rural area but to keep people interested and filling seats on Sunday mornings. For now, we are existing and have a lot of big plans for this place. Between the time our last pastor left and Bill and Stella arrived, Chris and I did a lot of encouraging and ramping up with the remaining members. We commited to pumping up the worship and having those who are musically gifted in some respect to give their talents so that we might have consistent leadership in worship which will inevitably lead to the congregation not having to worry about trying to figure out the melody of a song or the specific lyrics but to just give all they have to give in the worship.....

Bill likes hymns. He also likes songs written in the 60s and 70s in the style of hymns. He says that the modern songs are too hard for the congregation to follow and that we need to keep things simple or else they won't participate. ...... .............. Okay. In short, modern music is hard for Bill to follow and makes it hard for him to participate. I tried to explain to him as politely as possible that many members of the congregation have been expressing their wish for us to sing some more up-beat and modern songs. So I really pushed for that in a meeting with Bill today and he's handed over the charge of music to me. Great. :) So I've chosen a balance of contemporary worship songs and upbeat hymns in hopes this will please him. We plan on having a musos rehearsal on Wednesday evenings starting next month and at that point, whether Bill agrees or not, we will all be choosing the music amongst ourselves. I hate to say it, but Bill may or may not be here in 6 weeks and we ALL will be, so I think it's fair that we continue with our worship as we'd originally planned....and hopefully I haven't stepped on any toes. I felt kind of tense there for a minute when I was trying to explain to him why we don't sing as many hymns and why young people find it difficult to make the connection between the words and their lives...it was difficult to explain because he was completely and entirely baffled that a person could exist who wouldn't easily have an emotional connection to every hymn. I did the best I could. I'm really looking forward to when Beebs gets home in a few minutes and I can talk to him about what I said and whether I should add or take away anything next time...... streeesssss....


  1. You go girl! I will pray that you will hear the call that God has chosen for you at this time. As long as you listen to God and listen to the people you are serving, then be confident in choosing the music and leave the stress behind. You are doing a great service to the church and I know you will be so blessed!

  2. Melissa, I know that God will be with you and it will work out. As for the songs, don't stress, that too will work out. Bill won't know what happened once y'all start singing. It is so hard to comprehend for us in the bible belt that there aren't lots of churchs and denomenations to choose from. I think God put you in this place for a time like this. You and Chris can do it!
    Love, Mom


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