My wife hates my desk. And this is completely understandable.
My personality type is “Selfish”. The test results may tell you I am a ‘Lion’ or ‘ENFP’ but one quick look through my actions on a daily basis and it’s clear I was raised an only child. When I am working (or playing for that matter), I hate to be interrupted. Headphones on, laptop bright, fingers pressing all point to a world meant for one. And my talented, multi-tasking wife wonders what my problem is.
It happens all the time: she peeks her head around the corner wondering what I think about a certain issue and I respond as if I was writing the Magna Carta. The ensuing arguments and hurt feelings aren’t worth the quick lapse in work and you would think I would know this lesson by now.
The latest form came through a neighbor. I live communally with four married couples (my wife and I being two of the eight) and some of our housemates had agreed to help a neighbor move some old junk from his basement. Some old, heavy junk. So I am busy writing and studying when they come in saying they need help. And my response was, well, predictable to say the least.
I ended up helping. And it ended up not being so bad. But that doesn’t mean that I wasn’t completely upset and ticked off at everyone involved. Which is silly…
I end up more upset at myself than anything else. Why? Because I realize that we’re all called to the interrupted life. I am the disciples or religious leaders constantly urging Jesus to keep going toward the mission that we’re all in together. “Jesus we need to get going.” “Jesus, we’re going to be late.” And yet time and again, whether it was an old woman who touched the edge of his garment or some children drawing near, Jesus’ life was one full of interruptions – living in the beauty of a moment and allowing that to be the place where he was most present.
I get tired of my selfish attitude and yet nothing seems to have changed much in the last 30 years. Perhaps it’s being continually cognizant of my own issues and asking God to change things. But it has to start somewhere…
Matt Conner is a freelance writer and music journalist. As the founding pastor of The Mercy House, he led a church community for more than six years in intense community development across racial and socio-economic lines. As a writer, he’s interviewed thousands of musicians for multiple print and web-based publications.