Adventist Spends Entire Service Praying For Strength to Say “No” to Nominating Committee Roles

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As Sister Diane Overcommitted took her usual seat in the third pew from the front, she knew what was coming. Her body tensed up as she spotted Elder Tasker making his way down the aisle, arms loaded with clipboards and that ominous nominating committee list.

“Oh Lord, give me strength,” Diane whispered, eyes squeezed tighter than a vise grip. She had learned over the years that making direct eye contact only made Elder Tasker’s pleas more intense.

From the moment the Opening Hymn started, through the troubling Scripture Reading, and all the way to the Closing Prayer, Diane was locked in a fervent internal dialogue. Oblivious to the Melendez twins’ squabbling two pews behind her, she could focus on only one thing.

“Lord, you know I want to serve,” she sent up in hushed desperation. “You know I’m always the first to arrive and last to leave every event. But I beg you, not this year. My cup runneth over!”

Alas, as the service concluded, Tasker descended on Diane’s pew like a heat-seeking missile before she could make her traditional parking lot exodus.

“Sister Overcommitted, praise the Lord!” he exclaimed, placing a hand on her tense shoulders. “I can’t thank you enough in advance for agreeing to be the new Head Deaconess…”

Diane’s heart sank. She had envisioned herself calmly but firmly turning Elder Tasker down, finally putting her foot down.

But as Tasker looked at her with those big, soulful eyes, Diane felt her resolve melting faster than an Edelweiss Delight on a summer’s day. A lifetime of people-pleasing and inability to disappointment overtook her.

“Why…yes, Elder Tasker. I’d be honored,” she heard herself saying, each word sticking in her dry throat like a shard of cracker.

As Tasker scurried off in triumph, Diane buried her head in her hands. “Next year, Lord,” she promised herself through gritted teeth. “Next year I’ll definitely say ‘No.'”


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