An Interruptible Life

Jodi Detrick is coming to NCWA! See end of post for details.

If I can just answer five more emails before I have to leave the office to get to that meeting on time, I’ll feel better about walking away from the stack of thank-you notes I still need to write. I’m in mid-sentence, typing away at the second email when the phone rings.  Oh, great!

“I know you’re busy, Jodi, but could we talk for few minutes?”

“Sure!” I answer, trying to make the enthusiastic lilt in my voice counter balance the pressing weight of obligation I feel.  I’m so glad you can’t see my face, I think as my whole to-do list flashes before my eyes.  My face does not match my voice.

Don’t you just hate interruptions, especially when you’re doing something important or time-sensitive (which is a pretty good description of ministry these days)?

But what if an interruption to ministry is…well, ministry? I’m struck by the fact that Jesus lived such an interruptible life.  Just a cursory reading of the Gospels will reveal that many of his miracles were done in the context of an interruption. He’s on his way to heal a little girl who is literally at death’s door (now that’s important, time-sensitive ministry), when he’s interrupted by a woman who’s been chronically hemorrhaging. When placed beside the need of a dying little girl’s need, maybe this one is less important, less timely.  But Jesus stops and heals this interrupting woman.

What would it look like to live an interruptible life these days? Jesus’ life was simple enough that he wasn’t upset or overcome by an intrusion into his planned schedule. He knew that if he just followed his Father’s daily agenda, he would be right where he was supposed to be and complete everything on his Father’s to-do list.

“Sure,” I say again, my face relaxing a little as I push my list to the side. “Let’s talk.”

By Jodi Detrick, © 2008

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Jodi Detrick will be the guest speaker for NCWA’s April 4th meeting.

She is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God  and the Chairperson for the Network for Women in Ministry, a national A/G network dedicated to developing, mentoring, and supporting vocational and volunteer female ministers (both credentialed and non-credentialed). A long-time pastor’s wife, she also served as the Women’s Ministries Director for the Northwest Ministry Network (NWMN district) from 2001—2009.

Jodi and her husband, Don, live in North Bend, Washington where Don presently serves on the NWMN executive leadership team.  Jodi earned a master’s degree from Assemblies of God Theological Seminary where she is currently in a doctoral program.  She has been published in many different periodicals and books and is a regular religion columnist for The Seattle Times.

In addition to being a frequent speaker for various events and conferences, Jodi is a personal and leadership coach who enjoys helping people get “unstuck” so that they can move forward in their lives.  Jodi loves meaningful conversations with friends over a good cup of Starbucks and spending time with her husband, her adult kids and their families—and especially her two grandgirls! Visit her coaching website.

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2 thoughts on “An Interruptible Life

  1. Thanks, Jodi. Our pastor recently used this passage of Jesus stopping to heal the hemorrhaging woman as he preached about being generous with our time.

    I look forward to your talk at NCWA. My favorite interruptions are time with our five grandkids. But mostly, I’m intentional about making time for them. I don’t consider them interruptions.

    Grandma Tea (www.PreparingMyHeart.net)
    Author of “Preparing My Heart for Grandparenting”

    Like

  2. Thanks for this, Jodi.

    Parenting, in particular, helps me learn patience. I train my child not to interrupt unless she has to, but it doesn’t always work out that way. That’s when I get to grow in grace.

    Consideration works both ways, though. It struck me one Sunday, while I waited for my little one to finish her coloring page in Sunday School so we could leave, that many other parents came in and yanked their children away with little warning. Sometimes as parents we expect our children to give what we do not. Most of the time we let her finish what she’s working on while we help the teacher clean up.

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