Monday, November 7, 2011

Learning to serve, learning to look

I wonder about service and pain.  Somehow I think they are connected.  Service isn't possible unless you can see beyond yourself. On a good day that's hard to do but when I am in pain, well, that's much harder.  Why is that? (listening) Hmmm, pain stacks up for me.  I get overwhelmed with it.  So God, why does it stack up? (listening) Wow, the sense I have is that grieving takes time and that I am not taking it. I feel like I take time but to tell you the truth sometimes I waste my time on things that swallow up my mind but accomplish nothing.  Why is that? (listening) That feels like spiritual warfare.  I'm thinking of Ephesians 5:15-16 where it says, "See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil."

Hmmm, I wonder what "circumspectly" means. (googling) Webster says, "careful to consider all circumstances and possible consequences" Wow.  See that you walk carefully considering the possible consequences, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time.  That takes a mind awake but for me I can choose to be awake if I am pushing away pain and avoiding dealing/feeling it through.  Ok, but sometimes it feels like the pain will overwhelm me.  What about that God? The sense I have is that it will if I try to do it by myself I will be overwhelmed.  The picture I have is of a faucet that turns on too fast for little hands but big hands can turn it more carefully.  Ok, I can do that.

Still, my burden today is about service.  The further away we get from each other in terms of connection the less we offer service to each other.  (though sometimes we offer service to another because it serves us somehow) In a family, we work as a team.  One gets breakfast started while another starts the laundry, helps with the kids or takes out the trash.  Service requires that we open our eyes to see the man standing on the street corner or the woman who is bruised and skittish. Sometimes it's seeing beyond the day to day even in our own families.

Seeing requires wisdom.  I once saw a man standing on a street corner holding a sign that read, "Need money for beer".  Not everyone is that honest and service to some is refusing to be used... or beaten.  But service is a mind set.  It is choosing to look beyond my pain and see the plight of others with a heart to help.

I once watched a movie called, "Pay it forward".  Today is a good day to start a trend. :)

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