Friday, March 27, 2009

Am I Holding Back?

Today I face the stark epiphany that I am holding back on the potential I have to impact the world around me for Christ.

Sure, every believer must feel this way to some extent. Can a person ever completely fulfill his or her potential in this limited world? Unlikely.

But I have been holding back, somehow, some way. I strive to serve people well in corporate America as a tentmaker, do my best to care for my family in suburbia, try to write impactful articles and books and blogs. Yet something is missing.

One restless example: I have traveled little beyond this country. I have never been on a mission trip, and have rarely spent time among the truly destitute. A day-long service project here or there, random or intentional acts of service back when I was pastoring full-time, somewhat regular visits to prisons or hospitals or other shut-in types of places during my seminary and pastoral years in general.

But have I ever put myself in a deep, vulnerable position where God could more fully break my heart for those who suffer? Have I truly ever put it all on the line? I don't know. I don't think so.

There's many more adventures I would like to take for God, my heart and gut tell me. Surely my seminary years and time preaching and teaching and leading liturgy on a weekly basis did not go into some vacuum. It is all still a part of me, and has been contained in different wineskins for the past five years or so, I suppose. But I have a sense that servings of more organic, roll-up-my-sleeves flavors of ministry are still to be tasted.

I am just not sure how to get to the counter.

But I will at some point. In time, if I pay attention and spend less energy on preserving what is and more on what could be, I'll get there.

People tell me to be grateful and appreciate what I've got, especially in these economic times. And I do. But I am not satisfied. Somehow, I'm holding back.

But I'm praying, reflecting, reading, writing and talking about it. I'll receive more epiphanies. Admitting the check in the inner spirit is the first crucial step before making more room for the fuller Spirit to be unleashed. Then, watch out, little child...


At 11:24 AM , Anonymous Melissa said...

We can ALWAYS step it up. But go back to Blue Like Jazz. Where you serve doesn't have to be a war-torn or famine-ravaged country. God calls us each to vastly different places. For this time and place you are called to a different mission field--even through the corporate world--and you can't negate the impact you can have there. Just look at the armor of God in terms of a dress shirt and tie!

At 5:51 PM , Anonymous Tasha said...

Yes, both of you stated the facts. Too read sincere words expressed so gracefully is very thought provoking. I feel there is Much more I can do to introduce others to Jesus. I often think of when I was a child, going to church was a place you went without question. But as time has gone by, I've realized some people(sometimes even me) leave church and go back to there daily lives, walking the same walk they came in own. If we (NOW) know better we must do better!!!


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