I register for classes tonight. Well, technically I register tomorrow (1 am), but as I won’t go to bed between then and now, it’s basically tonight.
Registering for classes seems like such a foreign concept right now, a thousand miles from campus and in the middle of Lent. Tomorrow morning I’ll hit the snooze too many times on my alarm, just like every other morning in Syracuse. A little groggier from being up late registering, but otherwise the same. I will stumble into the living room, turn up the heat on the thermostat, and turn on the coffee pot. I will get dressed; pour myself a cup of coffee and head to church.
Tomorrow’s a Wednesday, which are always busy days. I will be on my feet from the time I get in the door. We have two worship services on Wednesdays, I preach and lead both of them. We’re reconfiguring the sanctuary for Palm Sunday tomorrow also. And there’s the midday luncheon with the seniors, adult bible class, and some prep work for Holy Week bulletins if I can fit it in. It will be a busy day, but a fun day of ministry. Filled with all of my favorite parts of the job.
But tonight I register. So tomorrow, as I’m going through this busy day of worship and ministry, a computer in Chicago will know the truth. I don’t really belong here. Despite having been here seven months, having fallen in love with this place and these people, this is not my home. I am a student at the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago. I am here only temporarily, to learn, to be a student. This is the odd tension of internship. Even as I immerse myself in the life of a pastor, there is this lingering reality that I don’t belong in this role, not yet anyway. Tonight I make the first steps out of this place and back to Chicago. It is a strange feeling.