Because life is a series of edits

Boat Trip on the River Denial?

In Thought on October 28, 2006 at 11:10 am

Just got an email from Learner. Apparently, their trip so far is all they had hoped it would be (quiet, relaxing, enjoyable), but not all is peaches and cream. He writes:

“Not great news from our church – apparently we’re $1,200 in deficit over the past three months in terms of our support raising. In addition, we’re barely a third of the way for November’s paycheck. This is not good.

For the first time in a while, Mrs. Learner and I lamented our financial situation, and for the first time in a very long while, I detected some fear within myself as to how any of this will work out, both in the long- and short-terms. We talked of how we could get out from under the fundraising burden, but there seems little way to do this without quitting school, and doing that cuts off the degree that would seemingly open the doors to what I think/hope I’m actually able to do.

It all suddenly seems to futile, and I wonder if we’ll be able to finish this school year, let alone the M. Div. track I’m on. For the first time, I heard myself say that that was okay, too, which raises all kinds of questions as to how much to fight for this and how much to just let it go, get a paying job of some kind, and finish out life at least being able to pay bills.

As I was relating some of this to a friend here (good visit, by the way), he said that I should try to start something. His suggestion made me wonder what happened to my once-entrepreneurial spirit? Maybe realism set in or I just got lazy, but I haven’t seen that side of me for some time. And even if I had the itch, I’m not sure where to scratch – what can I do that would be both fulfilling and something someone would pay me to do? It seems that most of my life, I’ve never been able to line those two things up very well, if at all.

What does God have for us? How much of this is his problem and how much of it is mine? What am I missing here and how am I to proceed? Is it true that “where God guides, he provides” or not? Is the question one of provision or of guidance? Are we out of his will (whatever that means?), or just not doing it correctly? What is he asking us to do? How are we to respond?”

From the sound of things, he’s more confused than depressed (though it’s never a long trip between the two). I think he knows they’ll come out of this and look back on it with good stories one day, but it’s always more difficult to make sense of things in the midst of trial than on the backside of it. And where they are is in the midst of it.

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