Well, this is a difficult post to write. I'm so full of love for all of you right now, bursting with it, and have so many things that I want to say...but I'll just try and make this brief.
5 years, 11 months, and 25 days ago I started a blog to have some fun, reach out to people and entertain myself. Along the way I landed a blogging gig with ChicagoNow, and even got on the radio a few times. It's been a blast, and I can't thank you guys enough for reading, commenting and re-tweeting over the years..
Lately, though, I've felt something missing in my life. I began to realize that too much of my time and energy were being spent in what was, in effect, a rather shallow series of clown jokes, stories about weenie-wavers, and self-satisfied crowing about how much I ate and drank. I've also become less satisfied with my career as a law enforcement officer. For some time now I've spent hours thinking about how I could better live a life of service, compared to the well-paid and complacent civil servant's life I now lead.
I have wrestled with both demons and Lincoln's "better angels" of my nature. And I have made a decision. A trip down south affected me in a profound, and I hope lasting, way.
This is my last blog post.
I have taken a leave of absence from my job, pending my retirement. I have purchased a used Dodge minivan and converted it to a makeshift camper. I had hoped to buy a mobile home in which to travel the shining gospel way, but it didn't work out.
On Monday I will be driving south to New Orleans where I will be joining a recently-formed street ministry, the Good News Living Statue Ministry. I ran into some of these folks during a trip to New Orleans, as several of them acted out the Stations of the Cross around Jackson Square. As I stumbled out of a nearby daiquiri stand and crashed into one of the soldiers scourging the Christ, I felt a profound sense of disorientation and longing, and knew I'd been truly touched.
The GNLSM ministers mostly to gutter punks, street performers and tourists in the French Quarter. They do so mainly by acting out various Gospel passages while spray-painted gold or silver, in the manner of many New Orleans street performers. I was moved by the depth and intensity of their devotion to the Gospel, as well as to the art of living statue performance. They are truly Godly people, and other than a brief (but ugly) confrontation with a group of traveling Clowns for Christ, I have found them to be beyond reproach. I have signed on to act as a fry cook and go-fer for the troupe until I "learn the ropes" as a living statue and New Testament reenactor.
My beautiful wife and children, while not fully comprehending my decision, are nevertheless pretty much supportive of it. They will remain here performing earthly duties such as bill payment and home maintenance while I carry out God's work down south. They are my rock.
Please pray for me, as I will for all of you. God bless you all!