It's been 5 months since the job was posted, and I still haven't applied. It's not that I'm waiting for the will of God to be revealed to me in 30 foot letters of fire because that would be dumb. (Just Do Something turned out to be an excellent little book giving language and explanations to process through our wrong-headed misunderstandings about God's will in the modern U.S. church.) So what is making me be stupid?
1. I don't want to let my dream be killed. I am apparently okay with it lingering in a coma, as long as I don't have to deal with the deathblow and separation. I am being a coward, preventing myself from failing by not trying. Maybe I'm waiting for the position to be filled, thus taking it out of my hands/control to do anything about. [Or I was until I talked to the head of the department, and he said that they had a favored candidate who proceeded to not pass muster, thus opening the position again and foxing my procrastinatory attempts at decision avoidance.]
2. I've heard some things that indicate that a thoughtful person who values truth-seeking over niceness might have a rough time there now. I'm much more outspoken and less willing to just let stupidity lie to preserve peace (defined here as the absence of open debate that might involve opposition/hostility). I have less tolerance for blind dogmatism than I used to (and I never had much to begin with). I am afraid I might not like working there, afraid I've built this dream up onto a pedestal, and the reality will not be like the dream at all, but then I'll be married to it and trapped by it and my commitment to it because that's how I am. [This seems a reasonable concern until you combine it with 3.]
3. I'm feeling comfortable with where I am, literally and figuratively. I have a more-or-less permanent job that pays the bills and where my managers and co-workers value me. I'm part of an artistic community that I enjoy. I'm active in the alumni association. I'm part of a Christian community I can tolerate. I have friends here. I may still be able to teach (part time) with the connections I have. I am safe-ish and on better financial footing than I have been since my injury. Why would I want to risk moving far away to the middle of nowehere to a possibly repressive environment where I would be trying to do something full time that I've never done before and might discover I dislike or am incapable of doing?
4. I don't do well when I pursue things I'm not passionate about. It's not like I always got everything I applied for passionately, but I can't think of one time that I did get something I applied for when I wasn't really committed to and passionate about it. I don't "phone in" performances well. I have this tendency to sabotage myself in cases like this by procrastinating until I have to do a slapdash job at the last minute, and it shows. Or I'll say things in extremely non-diplomatic ways to repel people. I push them away and thus control my own failure. I'm so good at it that I do it unconsciously unless I am extremely vigilant and alert. I am not very vigilant and alert right now. But I don't want to get rejected for that reason this time. I want to turn in an honest application and stand or fall honestly.
This could all be a moot point. I could be considered unacceptable for the job, and that would be the end of the matter. [Or not, since I'm hearing rumblings that they might rethink the doctrinal statement in the next few years, which would reopen all of this if I fail to make it through this time. As usual, I just want it to be over.]
If I do pass muster, though, I'm going to have some tough choices to make all within about a three week period of lease renewals and housing searches. I need to think about the choices ahead of time, so I can avoid rushed decisions I will be more likely to regret.
What are your thoughts on these reasons? Feel free to tell me I'm being ridiculous. :) I numbered them, so it would be easier to comment on specific concerns. :)
To be continued . . .