Continuing Forward (Eep!)
Granted, it happens less and less, but recently this underlying fear popped up again: That I’m going to do the wrong thing with this life. That the end of these days will arrive, I’ll be standing before my Maker, and He’s going to say, “Well …”, His voice trailing off with disappointment tinged with sadness, a shoulder shrug conveying a silent “Literally too late to fix it now” to seal the deal.
I can be a little bit dramatic at times.
As I said, this isn’t steadily thrumming near the surface – it’s not always front and center. And it can be an easy one to muffle, too. If I stick to the safe and familiar things, not look for the new things to do; if I stay away from big risks then there’s nothing to fear. But … never-ever progressing or learning or growing – becoming stagnant and stale – is not exactly a happy thought, either.
I suppose part of my issue is I’d like to plainly see the end from the beginning and every detail in between. Not too many surprises please and thank you. But life rarely works that way. So to keep coming back to a certain passage of Scripture that does not promise a highly detailed roadmap is interesting. But in its simplicity there is also room to breathe, to make mistakes, and then to pick up and keep going. Granted, I’m quite possibly taking it out of context. All the same, it stops the dizzying spin of my inner compass as I wonder, “What next? “And the verse is this:
But he’s already made it plain how to live, what to do, what GOD is looking for in men and women. It’s quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbour, be compassionate and loyal in your love, and don’t take yourself too seriously—take God seriously.” `Micah 6:8 (The Message)
In other translations, it says to do justly, to love mercy, to walk humbly with your God. But for this next stretch I need the verse the way Eugene Peterson unpacked and laid out the ancient text, particularly the bit about taking God seriously instead of myself. Here’s the thing: Too much navel-gazing can not only give me a sore neck, but also lead to me walking into things or stepping off of good paths – even the ones with plenty of bends and corners. Here’s what I’m learning to remember more often than not: The One I follow is steadfast and true. He sees it all, finish to start and back again.
So … here we (continue to) go. :)