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Not Prince Hamlet

"Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse."

On Self-Marketing

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Driving back from the Santa Monica Pier on Friday, Meredith and I listened to a This American Life piece, an excerpt from a memoir about growing up in California during the aerospace industry boom. The theme running through the piece was reinvention: California is a place where people come to reinvent themselves, to make up something about themselves that was not true before they arrived and to live into that something as if it had always been true.

I'm pestered by the thought that perhaps I should take that approach to my present vocational fecklessness. Maybe I need to market myself as something I've never been before, something I'm really not, but something that I could convince others I am and so maybe become.

A church consultant? An expert on some topic related to religion, the church, or society? A master teacher?

A good friend talked with me the day before our move about possibly creating a training or a retreat for churches around media literacy. He suggested assembling an audience of friendly faces and videotaping a run through of that presentation, then burning to do a DVD for marketing purposes. He had actually done this himself once.

I might try to do that (if I ever find some friendly faces). It may be the only viable response to the reality that I'm only now seeing, even though I'd read and talked about it for years: the culture is changing and the position of the church is becoming marginal. That's for the good. But it was a lot easier to say when I had a secure position and role as a professional within the church. Now that marginality demands of me some creativity and a bit of enterprising gumption to figure out how to use my gifts and exercise my ordination.

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posted by Not Prince Hamlet, 1:25 PM

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