Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Got Trouble?

Whether I wrote about this particular incident in this blog or not, I don't recall; nevertheless, it is still apropos here. It took some doing to convince me to go to ministerial school, yet after much prayer I believe I was led to the school's office for the application. There were a few tunnels to burrow through and some hills to climb, but I suppose it was a part of the process if really interested in being a minister. After which, there was also an interview with a panel of clergy. This was not an issue but was appreciated understanding that the wheat needed to be separated from the tares (Matthew 13:24-30 KJV). It took some doing and after two tries (reason being, I wasn't as acquainted with the church's ministers as others and didn't think it was necessary to be), I was finally accepted.

During initiation into the school, there was a small skit that the secretaries to the ministers put on to let all of the new students realize that because we were doing as the Lord has led to do, we should now be ready for all sorts of trouble that was about to happen in our lives. The skit was entertaining and I don't think any of us believed that there was going to really be anything so different that we would not be able to handle as we have been doing with the obstacles that many of us face in our ordinary lives. We applauded their talented efforts and was ready to move on to see what was next.

There were a lot of rules. None of which carried a complaint. We all knew better not to do that. We all started to get used to the new routine that was added into our schedule and the classes proceeded according to plan. Then one of the students lost her job because of the downsizing that was occurring within the company she was working for. This same student a few weeks later discovered that her home was going into foreclosure. A young couple in the class was going through turmoil because the wife had fallen ill and was rushed to the hospital for surgery. It was reported to the class that the illness was serious. In the later weeks, I recall there was car trouble for some students, family issues with others, financial matters all around, and many, many requests for prayer.

Personally, out of nowhere I fought with insomnia. Well, maybe not out of nowhere... you see, from the time I saw that skit, crap started to creep around and I didn't pay attention to it. First, being a Director of a Learning Center, I felt secure with my position. My employer, the owner, expressed how pleased he was with my performance and how I have saved him hundreds of dollars. My administrative assistant whispered to me that this pleased employer was interviewing to replace me. I didn't believe her until I saw one of the interviewees. I asked my employer and he concurred with what the administrative assistant said. Meanwhile in the classes, my employees weren't getting along and one in particular had a complaint every time I saw her. If it wasn't in her own home it was the children she was hired to watch. When I decided to pack my personal belongings to leave knowing that brown nosing could have saved my position, I just couldn't do it. At home, my children were being accosted by bullies in the school. I had to come see to it. My daughter defended herself from a boy that slapped her and the teacher claimed she saw the whole thing. So why didn't she stop the boy from slapping my daughter? The teacher's gaping mouth not realizing that she told on herself was all I need to start an physical altercation - but didn't. My son was enjoying being kicked out of school for his comedic antics. The neighborhood children were plotting to attack my other son - just because. I was told, its what children do these days. My ex-husband began calling me 2-3 times a week to let me know that he could be a better parent and that I should sign over physical custody to him. Believing that my sons needed to have that male influence, I allowed for them to be in his custody. Within days, he started the process for child support and then increased it. I was in court so often, it is a wonder they didn't call me by my first name. The Lord blessed me with another job, but it was just enough to pay for tuition for ministerial school and gas money. The car I was using belonged to a family member that needed to be picked up at a certain time. Understanding that I also had to transport my children, using the car wasn't an issue until this family member was assigned to be moved within the company. Her schedule changed and therefore, mine had to also in order for me to keep using the car. I couldn't do it. She asked for her car back. I had to make sure my children could get where they needed to be, I had to be at work and still go to ministerial school. Did I mention the studying and I couldn't miss one sermon because it could be a topic of discussion in class?  Did I mention that my student loans went into default and the debt collector absconded with my payment? The car I was using got broken into by smashing in the window and my identification was stolen. Because of the theft, my savings was depleted from both accounts immediately after the break in. The teller that allowed the transaction was fired and the manager handling my case was fired as well. The new management finally got my balance out of the negative and was about to replace the funds when he was fired too. I began the investigation process all over again with headquarters; believing I was getting through to completion until the head of investigation would no longer take my calls. I think I hadn't slept in about 5-6 days. I forgot how long I stayed on a fast believing that what was happening was because of something I had not done in Christ. No one really noticed that I lost about 4 dress sizes within a few weeks, that my hair was falling out, and at night when the television was off, it seemed like my reflection was coming through the screen. I called  the church for prayer. The minister I spoke to asked if I was on drugs. I suppose I would have thought the same thing if I saw how erratic I was one day during early morning prayer. A few days before that, I had a test. I knew the scripture that was on the test. I recited it just before sitting in class, yet when it came time for me to put on paper, I handed it back to the teacher completely blank. I couldn't think of one word - not one. I understood why but still didn't like seeing that big red "F" on my paper.  That erratic behavior in early morning prayer got me kicked out of ministerial school and I resigned from my job that was affiliated with the church. I didn't fight my sister when she took me to the hospital for a psychological evaluation. She had no idea what I was going through and I would have done the same thing if it were her.

I don't recall anyone in class asking for prayer with that much trouble. I suppose crap like that was kept to themselves or they just moved and started a new life elsewhere. Would that I could have turned back the hands of time or even the thought of starting over anywhere else would have been so refreshing, yet it left a bad taste for me to run. Within days, I returned to church and dealt with the finger pointing and the mumbling behind my back. It took a couple of years to get things back to normal. In that time, I was telling a few congregants about that skit that was introduced to the new students at the initiation process of ministerial  school. One of my former classmates was sitting next to me and looking as if she was reading her bible,  interrupted me with a statement that caused those hands of time to be turned back. She said, "the trouble they said we were going to have, I didn't receive it." She went back to reading her bible. I couldn't finish what I was saying. I don't even remember what the message was that day, whether I praised and worshiped as I would normally have, or how I got back home. She didn't receive it?!! We can do that?!!

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