Saturday, June 18, 2005

~ risky journey ~

how does it feel
to be on your own
with no direction home
like a complete unknown
just like a rolling stone

This morning I finished reading Under the Overpass (I started reading the book Thursday evening, and was interrupted in between with work and dinner with friends... in other words, I couldn't put it down). Wow. I have done social outreach for over ten years now - I was not particulary amazed by the fact that these guys were willing to hang out with "the least of these". What grabbed me - what has been grabbing me a lot lately - is the embodiment of Christ these guys displayed: their willingness to truly die to self, and to allow Christ to shine through them into other lives; the ways that people's hearts were touched just by someone willing to spend time with them and treat them as the creation of God that they are; and the work of the Holy Spirit in spite of our best human efforts.

I think about friends of mine who are willing to embark on risky journies in their own lives: moving across country with no plan other than to build relationships and invest in the lives of others, spend time in a culture they are unfamiliar with in hopes of allowing the Spirit to work through their life, joining together in marriage and work to allow two independent lives to become one, staying put until God calls them elsewhere even if they truly want to run, stepping out in faith into a new career when there is comfort in the one they already have. I also think about my own career, and the fact that someone I don't even know commented on how much of a ministry I have where I am out. God swings doors wide open, and invites us to walk through and share our lives with those on the other side. I pray more and more that my desire in life would be less for personal comfort and more for investing in relationships... especially those that are akward and messy and take work (and those in which I am reminded of the beauty of ESL). The summary of the book presents the following questions:

What would I do during my day or in my life for God if I wasn't concerned with what I wear, what I eat, where I sleep, what I own, what people think of me, or what discomforts I face?

Those women who are in Bible Study with me (Lies Women Believe and the Truth That Sets Them Free) will appreciate the weight of this question for me. There are many lies I have believed about what I deserve and what will make me happy. This question challenges them all. I promised Angelika and Meredith at dinner that I would let them borrow this book when I'm done, but I'm afraid I'm going to have to give it a second read-through. There's some stuff I need to hear again... there's lots of stuff I need to process. But I do promise to pass it on soon - to as many people as will read it.

Oh, and Ramon... both guys are living in Portland now and at least one is at Imago Dei (figures!).


Ramonsito said...

I need names and numbers! One of them might be the guy that started making pancakes for homeless every Saturday morning, or the guy who instead of starting a youth group went down to the bridges on the Columbia river to hang out with all the runaway and meth head teenagers who live there.

methy said...

After hearing about these guys at dinner the other night... your response Ramón is exactly what I would have done. Find these guys and HANG OUT WITH THEM. They sound like they seriously know what is going on.