Lunch with Heather and a Community Group leaders' meeting today, or else I'd likely as not hole up for the day. I'm so blessed to have the work I do, though. It's beyond imagining that I get paid to do what I do, that I can invest my life so clearly and obviously in the Kingdom. Every Christian is called to such an investment, without question, but so many of us have daily struggles with other agendas, especially at work. I feel like I got the "For Dummies" version, and I couldn't be happier with that. It's a blessing I'd do well to remember.
Sometimes, though, I'm convinced that we are often getting exactly what we want out of our lives, what we truly want. Not that there isn't real suffering and oppression and struggle (indeed, my framework is primarily that of a person of privilege, with much greater societal, economic, and relational mobility than much of the world enjoys), but when it all comes down, much of the drama and even the pain can be of our own choosing—it's what we're comfortable with, and walking away from it takes us farther than we want to go. Control is nasty that way. We become singularly fixed on exerting it where we can, and we camp out in those areas of our lives where we appear to have it. We can have an illusion of control even in the choice to identify as a victim. And we receive our reward in full.
I don't have that licked. What I hope for, however, is the faith to be open to receiving something else in my life and the courage to live into it. There's suffering either way; that I can guarantee. But walking in this way also promises blessing (Matthew 5:1-12)—a much richer, fuller truth than most of us have ever dared to grasp or hope.
It may be, however, that true blessing is out of my control. If so, which will I choose?