Thursday, August 18, 2005
In the past, when life was simple, some of the things she suggests in her comment would have worked. Now... the best I hope for is not seeing anything to get upset about.
To touch God is to be changed. To allow God to touch me is to be taken up in a whirlwind into a new kind of life. No matter that he promises to teach me everything I need to learn and to give me all the tools and capabilities I need to live the way he wants me to, all I see is the tornado.
My life has been predicated on, and made possible by, very powerful tools of sorting and selective awareness. I touched the whirlwind, He entered me, and I am becoming aware.
I feel things I used to bypass. Depression used to be an intellectual concept: I knew I was depressed but I worked around it.
I watched "The Dead Poets Society" the other day, feet up on the desk, Powerbook running the DVD, headphones in my ears. The strongest feeling I got? There but for the grace of God go I. I could so easily have been consumed by a school like that, stuck in a dead-end situation whose only exit was a bullet. But some sort of innocent faith kept me one step ahead of that, God always providing a stepping stone as the one beneath me crumbled. This happened so many times that it can't be coincidence. Of course, one logical question arising from this is "Why me?" Other people do get ground up in social situations. Why did God choose to give me the way out?
Now I feel the things the boys in that movie felt. At least in some form. My response is to try to prevent this destruction of my way of life, no matter that I know its logical conclusion. I don't want to dream, don't want to feel. Then what do I want? To be left alone.
What would refresh me? Being able to get the hell out of this city, leave everything behind and live in the middle of nowhere. That's just a symptom. What I really want is for God to leave me alone. That path is familiar, though, so I chase my tail. I'm cornered.
I can't get refreshment from God, the only real source, because to do so continues that burning touch. I can't get it from anywhere else, because then I'm cut off from any chance of getting out of this mess. So, I just want to give it up and dive down a hole. Leave the change for the strong ones.
I was reading Alex's Blog the other day. Seems the big question now is whether it's OK for followers of Jesus to make lots of money. There are those who believe that if you follow God's commands, you'll end up rich. There are others who say that any money at all is a bad thing. History shows that the question is irrelevant; what God wants is your heart, and the money will follow. I have a hard time with fatcats myself; they worry about the color of the carpet, and complain when someone scratches the new car. I take a simpler approach: give me a car that works, and who cares about home decor? And then the Holy Spirit chided me a bit: at least those with the expensive cars and beautiful home fetishes have dreams. I have no dreams, other than just making it thought one day without trouble.
Perhaps it's easier for God to get someone who already has a dream to sign on to a different dream. I, without a dream, don't look beyond the needs of the moment, and emotions certainly don't fit there. Momentary survival depends a lot more on quick reactions than anything else, and I've developed a hair trigger. God messes with that machinery and I get nervous: who will take care of me?
Well, define "taking care." I mean maintaining status quo. He means living. The two have little in common, other than I have learned how to survive in a hostile world. Reacting quickly keeps trouble from happening, most of the time, and gets me out if trouble is unavoidable. So, He tells me not to quit, to hold on. No big miracle, no great ministry leaning on my shoulders, just don't quit. That's all he asks, and I don't want to comply.
I just want it over with. Wave a magic wand. What I get is daily grind. I'm tired.