The way I am going to be doing this is by entering my thoughts periodically into this one blog entry over a period of time.
So, if there’s something after this sentence… it ain’t done yet. Got it?
Ok, see here’s another sentence. So you see, that previous sentence was right. I’ll try to let you know if it’s done. But if you see “if there’s nothing after this, it ain’t done yet” that means to come back periodically and check this particular blog entry.
Now that we got the ground rules out of the way, I’ve got to share with you how much John Ortberg’s book If You Want to Walk on Water, You’ve Got to Get Out of the Boat is meaning to me at this particular life juncture. Besides winning the award for the “Longest Titled Book Ever,” it has deeply and profoundly encoruaged me in the last couple of weeks. I’ve been trying to read a chapter a day, as devotional material and discovered the quiet voice of God speaking consistently through it.
So run out right now and get a copy. Or order it on Amazon. Either way, when Zondervan sees sales of this 5-year old book surge suddenly in the next couple of days, my blog will be solely responsible! Yea, right. Anway…
He notes in the chapter called Learning to Wait, that Robert Levine coined a new expression for time in his book A Geography of Time. He terms it the “honko-second” and defines it as the measure of time between the greening of the stop light and the honking of the horn of the car behind you. Most of us, Ortberg notes, do not like to wait. Besides being kind of a “duh” observation about our culture, if you’ll reflect a honko-second on your own level of impatience… with situations, people, finances, etc., you may be able to transcend the duh-ness of the observation and begin learning more about really enjoying life.
Did you have fun “waiting” for the next part of this post?
The more I reflect on waiting, the more I’m confident that the person who waits well, lives well. In our instant gratification culture, you can see the damages of demand for the “now” particularly in our debt loads (both national and persoanl) and our sexuality. The latter is evidenced in abortion rates, teenage pregnancy, adultery, etc.
Learning to wait is essential to your mental and physical health. Park your passions. Discipline your desires. It is in waiting that character is built and peace is found. Waiting equates to patience, and patience, even in the midst of hardship, builds perseverance. When you persevere, you grow.
For most of us, we have knee jerk responses to unpleasantness, as well as knee jerk embraces of pleasures, whether it’s impulse shopping, lust, gossip, substance abuse, etc. We dislike the discipline of waiting and choose instead what makes us feel good or gives us the quickest solution (even though it may carry consequences of its own).
I said Sunday in sermon, “The path of least resistance is also the path of least existence.” I believe that. If you go through life choosing the easy way out, you will never discover what it means to really live…
Posted February 12:
The waiting is over… I know none of you have had a good night’s sleep since I began this particular blog entry. You’ve not been able to exist. Your life has been bland. Meaningless. Empty. Like a Dallas Cowboy fan waiting on the next Superbowl, you’ve thought it would never happen. Well, here’s the final wrap-up to this neverending blog entry…
Just what is it you’re waiting for?
You know, there’s a whole ‘nother side to this waiting thing. All the above speaks of the virtue of waiting, and scripture certainly advocates this type of waiting. Yet there is another type of “waiting” that is really life inertia. It occurs somewhere between knowing that you can’t stay where you are and being unwilling to get off the warm end of the couch in cold weather. Know what I mean? It’s that part of life that you know deep down that God doesn’t want you where you are, but you’re still waiting there for some unknown reason…
What, for you, would put the icing on the birthday cake of your life right now? As I interact with friends and folks, I get this sense from so many that they just haven’t thrown all of themselves into this thing called life. (No, I’m not thinking about the Prince song – or the artist formerly known as Prince).
It’s as if they just are yet sure if they’re really willing to really live. Their attitude is one of caution, kind of a I’ll-bide-my-time-and-see-what-happens approach.
Can I just say… get off your heinie and LIVE! Really live! Laugh, love, learn, risk, run, fail, and try again.
Consider the following collection:
? Trying times are no time to quit trying
? Enthusiasm is contagious and so is the lack of it.
? If there is no wind, row.
? Never say “never; Never say “always,” and never give up.
? Those who expect nothing shall never be disappointed.
? Today is the tomorrow I worried about yesterday – and all is well!
? While seeking happiness for others, we unconsciously find it for ourselves.
? Success consists of getting up just one more time than you’ve fallen down.
? A man’s character and his garden both reflect the amount of weeding that was done during the growing season.
You could come up with a hundred of these pithy remarks, smile, and say, “That’s right, that’s right…” But until you launch the boat of your life, you’ll never make it to the undiscovered country. The church that I’m a part of is aptly named “Journey” Church. We earnestly feel like we are here for a purpose, and that God did not create us to sit still and and attempt to experience life from the proverbial armchair.
When you determine what it is you’re waiting for… determine if it’s worth waiting for. Many times, upon its arrival, you’ll find your sights set on yet something else that’s “just around the corner.” Quit waiting. Get up. Go out. Jump in. It’s not perfect, but you were made for it. Let me be the first to introduce you to…. life.
Oh.. and this blog entry… is done. No more waiting!