Shabat shalom children.
I just came in from my morning walk.
My devotions led me to this.
It was one of the most common “sayings” when I was in the army.
I haven’t been in the army since 1977 but I still hear it.
Sometimes I say it.
It is entirely likely that I can’t say it enough.
“That’s above my pay grade.”
When confronted with a task you aren’t qualified to do and when assuming such a task would bring a responsibility you can’t bear you would reply “that’s above my pay grade.”
Sometimes it was a cop out.
Sometimes it was an attempt to pass the buck.
As the years have become decades I have come to realize it is the truth that can set me free and give me hope.
It is above my pay grade to sort out climate change and pandemics. I can do what I can do but when it comes to what you, or someone in Hoboken does, I need to let go when I get to my limit.
I doggone well better not catch you knocking the teeth out of an airline attendant though.
Or talking ugly.
It is above my pay grade to analyze, or psychoanalyze, the motives, histories, and actions of people I don’t know- and most of the people I do know.
And it is infinitely beyond my pay grade to judge or condemn them.
If they hurt a child you dang well better know I will intervene.
Just be kind.
It is above my pay grade to understand the Divine and it is vastly beyond me to take on God’s responsibilities.
I get pretty nervous when I hear others confidently doing so.
Something ain’t right.
There is a beautiful peace to be had from accepting the graces that come unbidden and unforeseen.
It is above my pay grade to understand friends, and a Friend, who are unrelentingly faithful to a cracked pot like me.
Still, there you are.
I won’t be asking questions about that. I will just cash the check.
As our Friend walked beside me on a Sunday morning that could be described as “crisp” we were having a very limited talk. It was all I could handle but it was way more than I needed. When he saw how I was coming to terms with my limits he smiled at me the way he does and said…
“Now we can go places.”