Sunday, November 13, 2005

One of my favorite pictures from our trip to Canada this past summer. The clouds broke for one perfect half hour as we were canoeing on a glacial lake. That was a smile from God to me! Posted by Picasa

Doing, not Becoming

On the topic of my last post, here is a post from a friend-by-extension (since we have mutual friends, but never have spent too much time together) that seems to say exactly what I've been thinking lately. I find myself thinking about God a lot, but hardly talking to Him. I find myself extremely busy with things that are all good, needful things- teaching and trying to do my job with excellence, tending to my house, helping with the high school group at church, spending time with Brad (my favorite!), talking to people... but if they take me away from the Source of life, how will I have anything to give any of these people? I go through cycles where I see this clearly, ask forgiveness and try to depend more on God, only to get swept back into the current again. The emptiness below my sense of capability and urgency shows itself once in a while, when I realize that for someone who would say without hesitation that my relationship with God is the most important aspect of my life, I sure don't act like it. What is it that I want? What does real, deep communion with God feel like? I feel like I've been trying to learn to swim in His presence my whole life, but I'm still fighting the motions and my head is bobbing underwater, making me cough and sputter. If I could just learn to move with His presence, it would be effortless and free... but my attempts to make the motions on my own leave me dog-paddling and choking like a small child, swimming for the first time.
May this week be filled with more moments where I stop to talk with God and float in His love and forgiveness.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Confessions of a Spy

The title of this post makes it sound much more exciting than it is... I don't have any harrowing tales of infiltrating military bases or going undercover as a diplomatic envoy. But I do feel like a spy at times, or at least a gawker- one of those background bystanders in pictures of important events, wanting to get as close as possible to the action. The spying I do, though, is from my desk chair- I am a Blog Spy. I'm a drifter, one who nibbles and samples other people's thoughts, struggles, and random musings, leaving no trace of myself. Simply put, I read a lot of blogs, but I almost never comment on any of them. I have over 20 blogs on my 'favorites' toolbar for Explorer, all of which I visit every 3-4 days at least, yet I haven't left a comment on any of them for a long time. Some are pages of friends, a few are group forums, and some are strangers I've discovered through a '6 degrees of separation' link to the aforementioned friends or groups. Most of these people have no idea that I'm reading their blogs, that I drift by and see what they're thinking, that they scintillate or amuse or anger me. Every day I'm enriched, or at least taken outside my own life sphere, by what I see, yet I never respond to what these people give me.
I don't think it's a coincidence that I've recently discovered a love of autobiographies. There's something of the people-watcher, the spy, in me. In fact, I think there's a fair measure of armchair psychologist, or at least strong curiosity for why people are such mysteries. People are fascinating- full of complexities, utterly unique and unpredictable.
I'm meandering, though- the question here is why I don't comment on other people's blogs. Every time I read a good post, that stirs up a thought or reaction, I think about commenting and immediately draw back. I'm still sorting through the reaction, and I know part of it is laziness- I have a hard time putting thoughts into words, and I'm very critical of what I've written. But a larger part of it is fear- a fear of exposing who I am (and thus who I'm not). I think I have such a desire to see myself as a smart person with a valuable comment on everything that I can't actually enter a dialogue with others, in case they out-argue or correct me or even just disagree with me. But I'm losing the chance to participate and engage with people, to actually get into the grit and texture of life, and I'm becoming a bystander, gazing through a window at what I see going on. I could go join the action- but by making a decision, that would define me more as a person, and therefore shut out some of those options that I so like to keep open. But what am I keeping them open for?