Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Seashells//Why I Am What I Am
A few years ago I had two revelations from the Lord that at the time didn't seem connected, but in my current situation I realize go hand-in-hand.
The first happened on Broadway in Campbellsville. I was driving down the road and passed McDonald's. And the question came to mind, "What if the Lord called you to work at McDonald's for the rest of your life?"
And I thought that was the most scary, repulsive thought I'd ever had. Send me to Africa, I don't care just don't let me end up working fast food for a living!
Around the same time I was also reading John Piper's book Don't Waste Your Life. Please, if you've never read it do yourself a favor and pick it up! I can truthfully say this is one of the few books that has "changed my life."
In it Piper writes:
I will tell you what a tragedy is... Consider a story from the February 1998 edition of Reader's Digest, which tells about a couple who "took early retirement from their jobs in the Northeast five years ago when he was 59 and she was 51. Now they live in Punta Gorda, Florida, where they cruise on their 30 foot trawler, play softball and collect seashells...." Picture them before Christ at the great day of judgment: "Look, Lord. See my shells." That is a tragedy.
What do these things have to do with each other? My fear of being stuck working fast food and my determination to have more than a seashell collection to show the Lord at judgment day? Simply everything.
Because for at least this stage of my life the Lord is calling me to work in a secular environment, and I didn't care what secular environment it was to be. When the opportunity came up to work at the Restaurant, I saw this as confirmation. I've got the head knowledge but the Lord has been challenging me to redefine the way I love people.
The head knowledge comes naturally now. And it did for Jesus, too. He could sit in the synagogues and pontificate various aspects of the law with rulers all day. And he did.
But when it came to loving people, to loving on people he took a very radical, revolutionary approach.
I want to pursue that approach, more than anything in the world. And if it means working as a waitress at a home town restaurant in the middle of nowhere Kentucky, so be it. Or if it means setting up camp in a mud hut in Africa, so be it.
Only, Lord, just let it be.