money is dumb.

2 May
I wish it didn’t matter.  I’d like to believe that it doesn’t.  Money is a necessary evil, one required in our society to survive.  Money is what buys the things we need to live.  Those basic needs we learn in elementary school social studies – clothing, shelter, food.  We need money for those things.  gross.
But beyond that, what really do we need?  I know, I know.  I sit here, typing on my MacBook that’s charging my iPhone, surrounded by a closet of way too many clothes, next to a bathroom easily containing at least $100 in product/makeup, and lots of stuff.  [The gnomes on the shelf are excluded.  They are not stuff; they are gnomes.]   If this weren’t a public blog, I would call it shit.  [Whelp, just did.] Who am I to talk?  I can’t. 
As my classmates and I move farther and farther into the interviewing/call process, salary negotiations happen.  I’ve shared with a very few of you that I had a second interview yesterday.  If they decide to extend a call, the next step would be going over the salary packages and I feel completely ill-equipped to be on one side of that table.
Ill-equipped and very uncomfortable.  I find myself wondering what I need, and I think I’m easily going to be the push-over because, in all honesty, I don’t need a lot.  There is such a fine line, simply not wanting to be taken advantage of and honestly evaluating my needs.  The synod guidelines for pastor salary include a designated amount for books, periodicals, etc.  Do I need that?  I’m quick to say no; I can easily pay for that out of my general salary.  Do I fight for my cell phone bill to be included in my salary package?  I’m quick to say no; I’ll make it work.  I go back to my childhood-taught line, “Don’t ask for money,” but then contrast it with being a professional with a master’s degree who deserves such-and-such a salary.  I can’t find the balance in my head.  Will this lead towards poor thinking, financial management, and planning on my part?  Some pastors would say yes; some would say no.  
I’m leaning towards not, probably lots due to my dad.  Today would be a celebration of his 52nd birthday and there is no doubt that were he still here, my mom [in collaboration with us kids] would hand over standard packages of white tshirts, socks, and underwear as his gift.  And he would be happy as a clam.  It’s all he needed.  He had a house, food on the table [and chickens in the yard], a job, a shirt on his back, and a family.  What more is there?  He taught me what’s needed in life, though most of the times I forget.
What’s needed right now?  A little Marty McFly and a DeLorean.
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