Out of the Box

Getting creative with Christianity, crafting, cooking, copious usage of alliteration, and the rest of my life

I spoke too soon July 15, 2010

Filed under: Adventures in Toronto — Grace @ 10:21 pm

So, you know how excited I was about finally getting to teach ESL?

Well, that won’t be happening anymore.

Yesterday night, Pastor Shawn and his wife came over to the house to discuss a possible transfer with Anna and me. There’s a church in another town that needs help with children’s camps. We wouldn’t have to move. Anna was thrilled to hear about the opportunity, and rightly so. She decided to agree to be transferred. Since I’m actually teaching now, and since I didn’t want to leave our current church with no help at all, I decided to stay. It seemed like the ideal solution.

No such luck.

This morning I received an email from the national convention saying that we could either transfer or go home. Staying was not an option.

I emailed them and told them that things had changed. I wasn’t unoccupied anymore. I was teaching, and it looked like there were still more people who could use help.

How silly of me to expect them to care.

No, they offered some convoluted reasons why both of us had to transfer or neither. They didn’t want either of us to travel alone – which I had already been doing. They didn’t want to split us up by having one of us live at a different location – when they had already told us that transferring wouldn’t require us to move. It was important for us to function as a team – when we had had different jobs from the beginning and had accepted this assignment with that understanding. None of it made much sense, but hey, they don’t have to make sense. People in positions of authority are apparently exempted from that kind of obligation.

Is this really supposed to be a choice? I can go to this other church or go home. If I go home, Anna probably has to as well. Either way I have to give up what I was just beginning to be able to do. I mean, after chasing a bunch of kids around all day, how much energy am I going to have to make an hour-and-a-half trip, teach a lesson, and go back home? That’s five hours, or four if I shorten the lesson. Could I teach on the weekend? Maybe. Even if that somehow works out – even if I’m not too tired and people are willing to give up their weekends to come listen to me – it ticks me off that CNBC thinks they can mess around with my life regardless of how I feel about it. It ticks me off that they helped to set ESL stuff in motion, and now they’re trying their hardest to take it away from me.

In case you’re curious about my decision, I’m staying in Toronto and accepting the transfer. I’m not going to ruin this for Anna, and I’m not going to give up the slightest possibility of doing anything useful. But that doesn’t mean I’m happy about this. Quite the reverse. Not that there’s a single thing I can do about it.

Whatever. Let’s just hurry up and get this over with so I can go home.


8 Responses to “I spoke too soon”

  1. El'endia Starman Says:

    Awww…that really sucks…

    However, as I was re-reading this post, I noticed that you tended to speak of CNBC (I’ve gotten Ms. Todd’s backronym stuck in my head now… :P) in much the same way that others speak of God. Perhaps, perhaps, there’s something more to be gained from this.

    In the end, the only advice I can give is hope, pray, and hang on for dear life. 😛

  2. Sprude Says:

    ^That, and steal as many hugs and positives and laughters as possible from all available sources. Like this one: *Glomp*

  3. LOL Says:

    When I first read this, I was at a loss for words. Mostly because it made me very mad.

    I’m still pretty ticked off about this, but I think I might have something coherent to say:

    I think it’s ridiculous that these guys believe that you should do exactly what they ask, when they ask. You expected to go up there and teach an ESL class. They were supposed to provide that for you, and they didn’t. When you finally get through to them that you want to be doing what you expected to be doing from the beginning, they turn it around and tell you to do something else. If you had known that you would spend your summer babysitting a bunch of children in a foreign country, would you have raised all that money to go do it?

    I believe that they’re being very irresponsible with the money that you raised. You were able to raise that money because they told you that you would be doing something valuable with it, and everyone who gave money to you expected that their money would go to good use. So far, it hasn’t. Sure, just being there is an educational experience in itself, but it wasn’t what people thought they were giving to. They might as well have asked for money to buy poor kids textbooks, but instead bought them ice cream. Sure, it’s nice, but it’s not the same thing.

    Basically, as you can probably tell from the above rant, the inconsistency of these people and the fact that they’re taking advantage of you and everyone who gave you money is… Well, I think it’s wrong.

    Even so, I hope you can make the best of it. You’ve been having fun so far, right? Try to continue that. Even though these guys are being huge jerks, don’t let it ruin your summer, and don’t let it spoil you for future mission trips.

    And, just in case you need it: *Glomps!*

    • On every mission trip I’ve taken, the leaders have always stressed that flexibility is key. I wouldn’t have been so ticked off about doing something other than what I had expected if it weren’t for the fact that I finally WAS doing something productive and enjoyable and it was suddenly taken away from me. But who knows? I may be able to do it on weekends or something. It’ll work somehow. I’ll definitely try to make the best of it. *returns glomp*

  4. Bozo Says:

    Alright, LOL up there was on the phone with me ranting about this not too long ago. I told her what I thought and she told me to come tell you, so here I am. Don’t expect this post to be completely coherent because most of my writing isn’t.


    So I started writing a long post where those dots are, but realized I was just starting to rant. Instead, I’ll give you the TL;DR version.

    Send them an email.
    Dear Jerks,
    I’m going to continue teaching ESL to my newly acquired Chinese students. If you don’t like this and want to kick me out of your program, go ahead. I’ll find my own way home.

    PS. Mess with me again, and I’m going Buddhist.

    I don’t know all of the details of your situation, but I will say that I think they are bluffing about sending your roommate home. They know that the thought of that happening is bound to make you feel guilty, causing you to cease and desist. I say don’t. You gave plenty of good counter arguments in your post, so say them to the right people.

    I don’t even think they can send you home, mostly for financial reasons. If they can though… well you said it yourself, “Let’s just hurry up and get this over with so I can go home.”

    I could go on, but I think this is the gist of it. Don’t hope for the best, fight for it. /flex

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