Alright, let’s take a break from the melodramatic blog entries, shall we? I am still processing everything I learned and saw in Africa. There are still days that are hard, and times when I don’t understand my own emotions. But I know that I learned a lot in a short period of time and God has purpose in all of those lessons, even (especially?) the hard ones. It will take time to fully understand all of it.
One of the things I promised myself (and a few of the more non-committal dudes in my life) before I left for Africa was that I was going to make fewer plans when I got back. Instead of responding to events weeks in advance I would be a solid “maybe”. Listen, I think commitment is a good thing. I’m not afraid of it. Some people need to embrace it a little more. But I have a tendency to over-commit myself, especially out of a sense of obligation. And it makes me too busy, and doesn’t leave any room for those fun spur-of-the-moment hang out times.
Since I’ve been back I have been better about saying no and staying in more. Embracing the power of “maybe” has allowed me so many introvert nights. To sit and be quiet, to clean my house and get rid of a lot of things I don’t need, to write more, to call my Gramma, to read. Of course, I don’t want to go to the other extreme and actually become a hermit, because I do really love people. And no one wants a flaky friend. But for now, it’s good to have some time to process and invest in the people and things that are closest to my heart.
Speaking of reading! I have been reading this book and it is a total game changer. It is about prayer, but he spends a lot of time teaching on our relationship with/to God and how to combat the cynicism of our culture. You need to read it, you guys.
Many of us believe in the Christian hope of ultimate redemption, but we breathe the cynical spirit of our age and miss the heart of God. This was brought home to me when I discovered from a widow that her husband’s philosophy of life went like this: ‘Expect nothing. Then if something good happens, be thankful.’ He had been a dear friend and godly counselor to me, but I was so surprised that I blurted out to his wife a confused mix of Romans 15:13 and Hebrews 13:20- ‘That sounds so different from “May the God of hope, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus fill you with all joy and peace in believe, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” Paul and the writer of Hebrews were bursting with the goodness of God. It spilled out of their hearts.
Disney is partly right. Because of the intrusion of a good God into an evil world, there are happy endings. Some of God’s last words in the bible are, “Behold I make all things new”. When you pray, you are touching the hopeful heart of God.
I probs should have posted this for Word Wednesday, huh?