O' Great God

'O Great God
There have been moments when I could not face Goliath on my own.
How could I forget we've marched around our share of Jerichos?
But I will not be setting out a Fleece for you tonight,
Just wanna know that everything will be alright.

-From Nichole Nordeman.

My constant struggle with God is a mixture of personal desire for contentment (I want God to call me to do things that I want to do) and a spiritual desire to do as he wishes even if I know it stands against my desires.

I don't think I'm capable of being content unless I'm doing as God wills in my life, and at the same time, I don't know that I'm content doing just anything God might call me to.

What if he calls me to martydom? The Medical profession? Celibacy? Homelessness? Addiction?

There are all sorts of vocations I can't imagine myself happy or content serving in, yet I recognize that I have natural aptitudes that might allow me to succeed in those areas. What if one of those areas is what God calls me to? Will I be content to follow? Or will my resistance (even if I eventually do as he asks) taint my work for him and make it meaningless and empty?

There's a quote from a chap named Frederick Buechner on this topic.

"By and large, a good rule for finding out is this: The kind of work God usually calls you to is the kind of work...

a. that you need most to do and
b. that the world most needs to have done.

If you get a kick out of your work, you've presumably met requirement (a), but if your work is writing TV deodorant commercials, the chances are, you've missed requirement (b). On the other hand, if your work is being a doctor in a leper colony, you have probably met requirement (b), but if most of the time, you are bored and depressed by it, the chances are, you have not only bypassed (a), but you probably aren't helping your patients much either. Neither the hair shirt nor the soft berth will do. The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet."

Wishful Thinking: A Theological ABC, Harper and Row, 1973

I hope and pray that he is right.

Wednesday, February 25, 2004


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