Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Unintentional Life

Being Prepared

These are some of the words that have been speaking to me lately. Through sermons, bible studies, conversations, and frustrations... any way that I am willing to receive the message, it is given!

Something that our pastor said has been on my mind...

(the clown-like-gnome is not representative of our pastor, but rather what I can potentially become, unintentionally... a clown)

That statement brought all my thoughts, conversations and longings into focus. I cannot float along in life (as I tend to do) and expect to land at a certain destination. My currents of whim and distraction will not deliver me anywhere but stuck in the bank, or possibly be capsized. If I wish to reach a particular place I must make plans, prepare, and then paddle to get there. Ugh, that means work and discipline, doesn't it? This might seem very obvious to many of you, but this has simply not been the way I have gone about life. In fact, I have an example of how I like to travel that illustrates quite the opposite approach...

Before Philip and I were married, my dear cousin Autumn and I traveled together for five weeks; three through Europe and two through Israel. We had Eurail passes, travel books and a loose list of destinations... NO reservations! One of our favorite ways to become more familiar with a city was to wander around, hop on a bus and ride it until we saw someplace interesting, (or until it reached the end of the line, were kicked off and stuck without a way back into town because all the buses had stopped running). The idea was that we could find places that we wouldn't have otherwise known about, and it felt like an adventure! But often we ended up getting dumped somewhere not-so-great and then had hours of wandering and winding our way back to somewhere more appealing (and safe).

Now, having described my approach to travel, I recognize it isn't so different from how I live day to day. Here I thought that my flexibility and "things will work out fine" personality were strengths, but I'm honestly beginning to see how they are holding me back.

It continues to woo me that God speaks so clearly to me, but with great gentleness! He knows that I need the repetition to keep something on my mind, and the frustrations and failures He uses to remind me of my need for Him and for the conviction to be intentional.


Chris and Amy said...

This lesson has been coming to me over and over too. In fact just finished a short book about how that said "To choose not to would be like a farmer choosing to do nothing all year - no planting, no cultivating, no irrigating, nothing. How preposterous it would be to expect a bumper crop at harvest time." (R Scott Rodin and Gary Hoag) - wow, smack right between my eyes!

Karen Franklin said...

Good thoughts, Emily.

Emily B. said...

Thanks for the affirmation... Chris and Amy, it amazes me to think how logical and obvious this illustration is about farming, yet it is still a profound realization! Thanks for sharing that! Live and learn right?

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