19 February 2014

little valentine

13 February 2014

the cool thing that's not cool

I get so bored when I hear about normal life. When I watch people dear to me live the same routine over and over--up, eat, work, pay a bill, eat, clean, watch a show, sleep, repeat 8 bajillion times. Go to Disneyland every once in awhile. I hate it. It makes me sick. It makes me bored. I hate it. I hate it.

I want do do important things. Things that mean something, but sometimes I love air conditioning and safety too much.


Slowly working my way through Isaiah, I've made it to chapter 58.

Justice. Social justice. I remember being at Multnomah Bible College, watching Kindra put up verses about justice around campus and having no idea what this was all about. Now it's all over the place.

Like this newly discovered thing. Ooo. Justice. Let's have a conference about it. Let's serve food at the rescue mission (and wash our hands and clothes really well afterward). Let's give a micro-loan or a chicken for Christmas (make sure it's tax deductible). Let's give money to the homeless guy (actually a gift card so he doesn't spend it on alcohol).

Awesome. You are so awesome. Is that what we want? To be noted for our awesomeness?

It all feels so particularly trendy right now. But this is so counter to what Isaiah 58 is all about.

Is not this the fast that I choose:
   to loose the bonds of wickedness,
   to undo the straps of the yoke,
to let the oppressed go free,
   and to break every yoke?
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry
   and bring the homeless poor into your house;
when you see the naked, to cover him,
   and not to hide yourself from your own flesh?
Then shall your light break forth like the dawn,
   and your healing shall spring up speedily;
your righteousness shall go before you;
   the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.
Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer;
   you shall cry, and he will say, 'Here I am.'
If you take away the yoke from your midst,
   the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness,
if you pour yourself out for the hungry
   and satisfy the desire of the afflicted,
then shall your light rise in the darkness
   and your gloom be as the noonday. 
And the Lord will guide you continually
   and satisfy your desire in scorched places
   and make your bones strong;
and you shall be like a watered garden,
   like a spring of water,
   whose waters do not fail.
And your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt;
   you shall raise up the foundations of many generations;
you shall be called repairer of the breach,
   the restorer of streets to dwell in. (Isaiah 58:6-12)

I hear God speak and ask myself this: is my movement toward justice a living, daily sacrifice or is it a sign of my awesomeness? Because if it's about how cool I am, I'm all wrong.

I'm rocked by this: Am I living in a daily posture of
      sharing the bread that I baked?
      welcoming the homeless poor into my clean home?
      taking my time to cover exposed shame and wounds of the vulnerable?
Am I allowing myself to
      be truly seen by those nearest me?
      reject wickedness?
      break yokes?
      pour myself out in satisfying the desire of the afflicted?

Nope. Awkward. Sounds like over-involvement. Honestly, I pull back from the uncomfortable, ill and awkward. Not worthy of facebook or pinterest, more the feeling of an unshowered morning. Yuck.

And yet, when we gave past what we were able, when we shared a meal against our better judgment, when I listen long enough to see and dress a soul wound, when I actually have courage to call it a yoke/sin/oppression/wound and mourn about it in myself and others, when I choose community over independence, when I stand against the flow of our cultural and individual wickedness, when I give and think to satisfy another--oh, dear--

this is when life starts.

It seems so small. How could I possibly be living a fantastic adventure right here at the Garden View Apartments?

Not sure, but I will say this: I have traveled the world. And take it or leave it. That's not where deep adventure is. Deep adventure is this--living fully present, living a life of justice here and now and today.  Stepping forward. Seeing each unperfect person as perfectly loved by God and doing all that I can to let them know this.

So...will I do it? Will I open up the door of my home and my heart? I haven't cleaned the bathroom yet. So maybe not.

But maybe.

I can start by cuddling Sophia. Let's see what happens next.

Come, Lord Jesus.