Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Messiness Leads to Clarity


You may or may not know this about me...I am a messy desk keeper. I don't mean to be, but I am. I've been working at New Hope now for over five years. I currently share an office with 2-3 people depending on the day. I try to keep at least the illusion of order because a couple of the people I work with are administrative types who like to have all ducks in a row.

But the inside of my desk is another story...Yesterday, I decided to take the day and do a five year clean up of my files. I think every five years is about right, don't you? Anyway, the day held unexpected lessons. As I went through, threw away and reorganized, I realized a couple things:

Most notably, I looked back on what I have done in the last five years in an attempt to help build community at New Hope. I ran across events, small groups, programs, dreams, goals, plans, meeting notes. As I looked back, I realized that I threw myself into a lot of projects. Some yielded great results, some failed miserably. I see now that one never knows what is going to make a difference. My desire to seek God and trust him to lead each day is becoming more grounded.

I also saw that I felt soooo strongly about many things. I felt like each thing I was involved in was sooo important. And a lot of it was important. Most of it needed my attention. But as I look back now I see the imbalance I have operated in for much of those five years. I see now that many of the things that seemed life and death were merely steps along the path. I did not need to sacrifice much of the time I sacrificed with family and friends. By focusing so much on the 'church machine' I missed out on where life was happening. I am learning to be present in the moment. I am a softball mom. In years past, I used to fill that game time up with some God-centered book or learning article. There's nothing wrong with knowing God better, but sometimes that learning will come through unlikely sources. On the softball sideline, my role is to offer friendship. When I am at the softball game with other moms, I need to really be there (even if the time doesn't seem to be doing much). Who knows what God might be doing.

As I move forward (with my organized files) I desire to be used by God, to stop sweating the stuff that doesn't matter, to be present in the moment by being in touch with what God is doing. I look forward to all the adventures God has in store for me and for all of us. He is amazing. He knows what's best. My job (our job) is to seek him and to trust him no matter what things look like today. We can be guaranteed that five years down the road things will look different. Praise God.

3 comments:

cheryl said...

i'm praying that god will use you on the softball sideline. i love what you say about being in the present. i'm convinced that everyone carries around pain and needs and if we can stop ourselves from being so preoccupied with our schedules, agendas and needs, than surely god can use us to be a welcome conversation in their lives. to live in the present with full intentions of being available for god can only be a good and honoring thing to god, right? easier said than done, i know, i was just praying this morning, in the midst of my struggle, that god would refocus and simplify my mind from it's worries so i could give my complete attention to someone, anyone, who needed it...i guess we can't always know, but i pray god used me.

cheryl said...

i'm praying that god will use you on the softball sideline. i love what you say about being in the present. i'm convinced that everyone carries around pain and needs and if we can stop ourselves from being so preoccupied with our schedules, agendas and needs, than surely god can use us to be a welcome conversation in their lives. to live in the present with full intentions of being available for god can only be a good and honoring thing to god, right? easier said than done, i know, i was just praying this morning, in the midst of my struggle, that god would refocus and simplify my mind from it's worries so i could give my complete attention to someone, anyone, who needed it...i guess we can't always know, but i pray god used me.

cheryl said...

i'm praying that god will use you on the softball sideline. i love what you say about being in the present. i'm convinced that everyone carries around pain and needs and if we can stop ourselves from being so preoccupied with our schedules, agendas and needs, than surely god can use us to be a welcome conversation in their lives. to live in the present with full intentions of being available for god can only be a good and honoring thing to god, right? easier said than done, i know, i was just praying this morning, in the midst of my struggle, that god would refocus and simplify my mind from it's worries so i could give my complete attention to someone, anyone, who needed it...i guess we can't always know, but i pray god used me.