a little and a lot

Sunday, May 11, 2008

A Change Gonna Come...

Thought I'd update you on my deep-thought processing, seeing as most of my posts of late have been about traveling, cool stuff, and good food.  (And boy, do I love good food.)

God is changing my life.  I think that should probably be a "given" in the life of a follower of Christ, but if we're honest, that is just not always the case.  

I have struggled over the years with what it means to be an adult.  Oftentimes, it has seemed that growing up means shedding spiritual formation, creative thinking, and revolutionary dreaming in order to focus on more important things like paying bills, time management, and building a new deck.  Does spiritual growth just stop when you enter the "real world?"  Somehow praying with adult friends seems silly now?  Talking about God's movement in the world and in your life is a sign of a youthful and immature dreamer?  Doing something besides or in addition to (a) pursuing your career dreams or (b) raising children is out of the question?  

I have wrestled with these questions, especially after having entered the world of matrimony (which some perhaps mistake as "real adulthood").  Somehow, for a time, it seemed that the Adult Me needed to grow up and stop being so...spiritual. 

My husband asked me a catalytic question back in the fall: "Do you feel like you are experiencing spiritual transformation in your life?"  Things started to shift.  

God is changing my life.  In January, a man asked a question that I have not been able to shake.  Shane Claiborne spoke at a conference Nick and I attended and told the story of when John the Baptist's followers came to Jesus and asked if he really was who he said he was...and Jesus essentially asked, "What do you see?"  Then Shane asked, "If others came to you and asked you if you really are who you say you are, would you be able to tell them 'What do you see?'"  My heart exploded.  

I am currently in the process of throwing open the doors of my life and saying to God, "Come on in.  Make yourself comfortable."  This, paradoxically, is causing some discomfort for me.  But I welcome Him, because I am seeing that adulthood does not equal spiritual stagnancy.  Dreaming isn't just for naive youth...it is for people of all ages with courage to creatively hope. 

What do you see?  

Note: If you are interested at all in joining me, I recommend 
reading these dangerously thought-provoking-&-action-inducing books:


ashley said...

2 part comment - 1. i would love to talk to you about this in person some time and learn from you and dream together. i share some of your feeling of "losing" part of who i was and what it means to be a Christ seeking 'adult"

2. when i look at you and "see" you, one of the things i admire about you most is your honesty and openness about where you are and what you are experiencing in your walk with Christ. i really feel like the Jesse i see is the jesse you are, but you don't settle for that, but always strive to grow. i love how you are always challenging yourself and others.

isn't this journey of having life to the full fun???

Kyle Smith said...

If you're interested in church planting/formation a good read is 'Organic Church' by Neil Cole. Our team read this book alongside Shane's book and it made for some good discussion.

While I found Shane's stories a little repetitive and off topic at times they really helped drive home the fact that a life authentically transformed will bring about and cause incredible things in this world. Good book.

I appreciate your openness and sincerity Jesse. I love our first-to last sentence: "Dreaming isn't just for naive youth." Often along our journey our team has been called naive because we are choosing to attempt a different sort of mission, one that we feel led to do for a number of reasons. I think we all can feel this way at times, like you're boxed into the American way, or the Church of Christ way. In reality we just need to be led to His way. I'm praying for you in your walk out of spiritual stagnancy, will you pray for me?

'He restores my soul. He leads me in right paths for His name's sake.'

Redhead Rambles said...

Wow. Great thoughts, Jesse. Got me thinking as well.

khovater said...

Oh no, does our new deck mean that I am a stagnant spiritual thinker? :) I don't really have any advice for you because I have felt that since I have become a MRS God has continually brought to my attention so many things that need work in my life. Over past year in particular he has kicked my butt which has been a blessing.

Adopting Rhet: Click on the timeline above to read more