Thursday, July 30, 2009

It always comes back to this

Note: I wrote this 2 weeks ago (as you might notice reading the post) but haven't gotten around to publishing it until now. Kind of apt, isn't it?

People are forever. One day when this stay of ours is done schoolwork and deadlines and alarm clocks and everything else that looms so large right now won't matter anymore. People will always matter. I dare to think that in Heaven my mother will still be my mother, my father will still be my father, my sister still my sister...I won't have my courseload or my GPA or the Dean's List but I will have the people who sat next to me in class whose lives I touched in ways I might not even know. I think we will know then; we will see how it was that God put exactly these people in our lives to help us become who He meant us to be.

I wrote that on February 22, 2008, in a post entitled On Being a Sojourner, which was reposted on this blog June 27, 2008.

As I write this it's July 16, 2009, and I'm publishing that paragraph for the third time because God just keeps pulling me back to that truth.

Since I started this blog I've been struggling to publish regularly; my self-imposed requirement of something resembling Deep Content means that my post ideas are sometimes few and far between. But in the last few weeks I've been managing to get my thoughts out there a bit more regularly. Between June 30 and July 8 I published three posts. (I think the June 30 one may have actually been published July 1, but I don't remember now.) Meanwhile I was doing a really good job actually sitting down and writing things relating to my novels; I was even doing a pretty good job of fitting in prayer time.

It would be eight days before I posted again, and I can't say that I was writing profound fiction or praying or working on any of those goals I had. Starting Thursday a situation came up with my family that meant my help was needed a lot more around the house (we're all fine, just crazy-busy), and the weekend slipped by without me managing to put up a post. So on Tuesday I was absolutely determined to write a post...but then my future roommate called, and we talked for an hour and a half, and the time I might have spent writing went just like that.

Very well, I thought to myself, But I will be sure of writing a post tomorrow.

At 8:06 p.m. the Cobbler sent an IM over Skype: Can you come over tomorrow?

Now, we had been trying to arrange a visit for a couple of weeks at that point so it wasn't entirely unexpected, but at the same time...I just don't do visits on less-than-24-hour notice.

And yet, somehow, at 10:00 a.m. the next day I was calling him to make sure my "between 11:30 and noon" arrival time was acceptable (he hadn't been able to check with his parents the night before; they'd just given general permission for sometime Wednesday). It was. I left a few minutes later, and arrived at about 11:45.

People, I just do not do that. I am not the sort of person who in a million years would even think about confirming ETA as I was headed out the door.

My spiritual life thus far seems to consist of letting God redefine my notions of what sort of person I am. And it almost always seems to involve stretching myself a little farther outside my comfort zone for the sake of someone else; of letting my schedule go for the sake of being present.

It's hard. I'd be lying if I said that I'm always happy with God's insistence on people. I'd rather have rules. I like rules. Rules are tidy. I love people, but people are so very messy. Does my salvation really have to depend on dealing with them?

I think it does. And I also think (for the record) that people are ultimately a lot more rewarding than rules. (Rules never hug you and tell you that you're wonderful, for starters.)


Galadriel said...

Your salvation doesn't depend on your dealing with them, but theirs might. ^_^

The Sojourner said...

That's an interesting point.

Just to be clear: I do not mean to say that other people effect your salvation (though they might, as you alluded to, share the Gospel with you and thereby be your first exposure to the faith), but they do affect your salvation greatly. Sometime when I can give the topic the attention it deserves I want to write a post on the necessity of a faith community (using insights gleamed from the Theology of the Church class I took last semester).

The Sojourner said...

I meant gleaned above, though gleamed does have a nice illuminatory connotation. :)