Monday, February 16, 2009

a bundle of parallel thoughts

1. I don't know what I am being called to do with my life. I keep meeting missionaries or hearing them speak and feeling like there is such singleminded passion there, kept under singleminded control... It drives my life and my current direction into stark contrast as a mix-up of ideas with no real mission. I don't know what I am being asked to do and it would be nice to know there is something. I don't mean I have to preach standing on a box in the Amazon rainforest or deepest Africa or something. In fact, I know that's not my path in life! But hearing people who work for agencies like Wycliffe Bible Translation... it makes me wonder whether I made the right choices when I gave up on Linguistics, or decided it was silly and self-indulgent to study Biblical Greek. It's not too late to go back, but then again I don't think I want to, and maybe my task is to be right where I am. I don't know!! Does anyone? All I can do is pray that God will lead me, and that I won't simply continue just to walk through open doors in the assumption that God opened them for me.

2. Meanwhile, I am undergoing a new regime in my behaviour, and it is astonishing me. After my crisis described in an earlier post ("my testimony"), I've been really happy, and also really determined not to slip into apathy again. One of my steps has been to start reading the Bible every day. In the past I've thought it made most sense to follow where the Spirit led, in a way, and just read whatever I felt like. A nice thought, but I've come to know myself a bit better and have accepted that I need discipline and routine - or the Bible reading just doesn't happen. So I bought a book called For the Love of God, by D. A. Carson, the theory being that if I have paid for something I will feel bound to use it! This follows one of those read-the-Bible-in-a-year programmes, and also has a reading written by Carson for every day. So every day I read a chapter of four different books. At the moment, I am six days in, having just read Genesis 6, Matthew 6, Ezra 6, Acts 6. I am amazed. Even on the days when I read a bit carelessly, things have just gone much more smoothly. The old temptations still turn up but I just don't want to act on them anymore. They're not that interesting. I am hoping this lasts and so I am determined to continue with the Bible reading.

3. No specifics here, because it's someone else's private matter, but I am feeling incredibly sad because someone I care about a lot, I have heard, is getting a divorce. I feel so guilty for hearing about this via the old 'don't-pass-this-around-to-everyone-but...' gossip. And I feel so miserable for this person who very obviously adored their spouse not too distantly in the past. And I know this is asking too much of anyone but I had hoped that this person and their spouse were the one exception in an environment of failed marriages. It's been hanging over me like a depressing cloud all day and all I can do is pray for him/her and hope that their faith in God gets them through this.

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