MedSchoolMonday: S3

A few questions:  How can the church make its worship relevant to the lives of its people?  How does the church incorporate mission in its worship?  How do we pass down the faith and the importance of mission to our children, not just by our words but by our actions?  How does the church offer ways to make stewardship a way of life and not just a once per year campaign?  How does the church make sure the Table of the Lord is more than just a place for our bread and wine to sit every once in a while and is a symbol of possibilities, faith, and service?

I’m beaming with pride about our church.   On Sunday we began our Second Sunday Stewardship (S3), a monthly missional/educational/stewardly/worshipful/intergenerational act of faith.  Instead of the plates being passed around for the offering, people were asked to bring their financial gifts and items that we identified local charities were in need of to the communion table during the time for the offering.   Unfortunately, I didn’t get pictures while folks were bring their gifts forward, but it was quite a sight, and the front of the sanctuary around the communion table was packed with the offering of God’s people, dedicated for God’s work in the world.   Here are some pictures from after worship as items were being sorted (so these are just a few of the offerings) and our design, created by one of our very own youth.

MedSchoolMonday – Sunday edition

From Dorothy:  I’m kind of mad because I was going to write this post, but Russ got the computer first. (PS – I would have written it better)

From Russ:  Nine years ago on a Maymester trip to France I met a girl.  I first noticed her on the first day of our trip in the trenches of Verdun as a friend and I mischievously lagged behind the group.  Yes, her backside was the first side I noticed, but I noticed her and I continued to notice her throughout our time in France.  On that trip we got to know one another, and I had a sense that was beginning to take hold of how special that girl was and how I wanted her to be a part of my future.  At the same time, back in the States, my brother and sister-in-law were expecting their first child, my first nephew.

Toward the end of our trip in France, while perusing the streets of Paris, I bought a gift to take back to my nephew—an authentic Paris Bib with an Eiffel Tower on it.  Admittedly, the purchase of this gift was motivated by excitement about being an uncle, and, at least in part, to impress the girl walking next to me so that she might mistakenly think I was caring and sweet.

At the time, neither of us could have predicted that one day that bib would be returned, mixed in a couple of boxes of boy’s clothes, for our own son to wear.  But here it is…

From Dorothy:  It worked, I was smitten from that moment on, or suckered, whatever.

MedSchoolMonday: jumps and thuds

Since day one of medical school I’ve had a recurring nightmare that I’d be on the way to an exam, and my car would break down in route (we haven’t exactly been driving cars in their prime).   I had another seven hour test this past Friday—there are only two more to go until starting clinicals.  I went to bed at 9:00 the night before.  I set out my clothes to wear the day of the test.  I packed my bookbag with everything I needed.  I was prepared.

Then I set out at 6:30am Friday morning for the 30 minute trek into Charleston.  About half way there I heard a weird noise that wouldn’t go away.  But there was a piece of junk car next to me so I thought that was it.  Then my car seemed to jump with a loud thud.  But it was dark and I figured I just hit a bump.  Then the piece of junk car exited and the noise was still there.  The car jumped and thudded again.   I thought, “Oh shit.”

It is my tradition to stop by the Hardees next to my parking lot to get an egg and cheese biscuit and coffee on the day of tests.  I don’t like change so I risked it.  I went through the drive thru, ordered my grub, and barely made it to the window.  I tried to push the gas to see what would happen and the car went nowhere.   I thought, “Oh my God, the Hardees lady is about to bust a gut laughing at me.”

I put the car in park, shifted back to drive, grabbed my stuff, and, thanks be God, was able to move and time the traffic just right to pull across the street into my spot.   I then went to take my test, the Dodge Intrepid having taken its last move on its own.  They want $2800 to fix the transmission.  The car’s worth about $500 when it’s working well.  We’re hoping to get a deal on a Toyota.

MedSchoolMonday-Read the Signs

Class was over today (at least the lecture) and I had an hour before going to a small group in which they are actually letting us see real patients this year.  Well, they’re only letting us see real patients four times this semester, which is a good idea on their part.  However, this is still an upgrade over just seeing actor patients last year.  Anyway, class was over and I had to use the bathroom and use the mirror to put on a tie.  The tie was half tied when I heard the door open and there was a female coming in.

We both looked outside of the door to read the signs to see who was in fault.  It wasn’t her.  The only people who I have told this story to have had the same response—“you didn’t realize there weren’t any urinals?”  No, apparently I didn’t.  Med school fills a person’s brain but takes away all common sense.

Separately, I didn’t attend youth group last night and stayed home with Piglet.  During bath time when it came time to wash her booty, she said, “wash my ass.”

I said, “Excuse me what did you say?”

“Wash my ass,” she repeated.

Still not believing what I was hearing we played the name the body parts game.  When I pointed to her booty, she said, “Booty.”

I then asked, “Do you know any other words for booty?”


“Who taught you that word?”

Then she went into gibberish mode.  Since then we have tried to get her to repeat that word on her own, but she hasn’t.  She sticks to booty and that’s it.  I’m hoping I imagined the whole thing or just was misinterpreting her pseudo-annunciated speech.  So maybe medical school not only takes away all common sense but also makes people imagine things.

It’s only a month into 2nd year, and I’m already using women’s bathrooms and hearing my 23 month old cuss like a sailor.  Just imagine how bad it’ll be during 4th year.

MedSchoolMonday: Beauty of Medicine

Second year of medical school is even tougher, but more interesting.  It’s more time consuming, but more enjoyable.  Second year is all about disease, infection, illness, what can go wrong, and what you do about it.

After now having some time for having one foot in the church and one in medicine, it’s become clearer why I’m better suited for full time medical work rather than full time church work.  Full time church work would be okay, but I’m not sure I have the patience.

Medicine is a good fit because you gather the history, perform an exam, do some tests if needed, and you fix the problem.  If you don’t know how to fix the problem or you aren’t trained to do so, you find someone who can and is specially trained in that area.  It’s objective.  It’s demanding.  It’s cutting edge.  Anything short of excellence is unacceptable.  If someone—either the patient or another member of the healthcare team—is making poor decisions or isn’t getting the job done, you call them on it.  If someone has upset you, or if you disagree with them on something, you let them know and you talk about it.

However, in the church, people are scared to death of conflict.  If things aren’t working or a certain aspect or mission of the church isn’t effective and doing its job, it takes time and a committee to study it—and that’s after weeks, months, or even years before admitting there’s a problem.