Living in a house with four other teachers has its perks. First of all, you have other people right there who go through the same crazy ups and downs that you go through. There’s this whole “I totally know what you’re talking about” thing that makes you feel better just because you know you’re not the only one who struggles. You also have the convenience of having almost all of your questions answered right away, because among the five of you, somebody must have heard the answer throughout the day, right? And as a first-year, you can draw on the stories and experiences of the veteran teachers and try to seem as though you know exactly what you’re doing when you walk into class the next day. And nobody knows the difference. Until now, of course.
Unfortunately, the life has its cons. First, everyone has to be up and out at the same time every day, which has the potential for crazy (although we do it like pros). Also, dinner can be a very quiet affair because we’re all absolutely zonked at the end of the day. And finally, there’s what I like to now call the pickle-jar complex.
Here’s how it works: You reach up, open the cabinet, and pull down a new jar. You place said jar on the counter and try to open it. There’s the key word—try. Naturally, it doesn’t work because most jars make it their goal in life to be absolutely unnegotiably unopenable.
Now, in a normal home, you would simply call the man of the house to open the jar. But in a house of all women, that doesn’t exactly work. All you can do is pass the jar on to the next girl and hope that she can persuade it to decide to act amiably for a change. Nope. Not happening.
What’s a house full of girls to do? Call the pastor, of course. He’s only just next door. Although, I must say, it makes for a hilariously awkward phone call:
“Hey, Pastor. Are you home right now? Oh, good. This is a weird question, but can we bring a jar over really quick for you to open? We can’t get it.”
He says, “Sure, I’ll get my wife to open it for you.” Can’t you just hear him cracking up?
So we run over and knock on the door, and Pastor and Mrs. A are standing there laughing. And Mrs. A says, “A pastor wears many hats, but this is a first.”
It got me to thinking. Being a pastor’s kid, I know the busy life of a pastor first hand. There’s a lot of house calls and phone calls, yard work and maintenance, studying and juggling, and trying to feed a flock while also trying to feed a family. It’s a 24/7 job that is physically, emotionally, and spiritually taxing. And you get called up to do crazy things. Like open pickle jars for those crazy teachers in your church.
Our pastor does it all so well, and with such a patient, kind spirit. It’s nice to know that we have a pastor that you can literally call anytime for anything, no matter how trivial. And he does his best to fix it. And while I’m not encouraging everyone who reads this to call him up and ask him to open jars, I am encouraging you with the knowledge that we have a pastor who does not think any little task beneath him. And that is a rare and great blessing.