April 25, 2010

what if.

I tell myself that I'm not really one to write book reviews, but I know that I often like to explain my thoughts right after finishing a good book. Which is usually because they were inspired by the book.

So, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years....I'm thinking about living a better story; not just sticking to everything that is comfortable. I went to Don Miller's blog today, too, and found a post about "what if," about allowing yourself to imagine things that you've always wanted to do. That reminded me of what I was thinking yesterday, that there is little I want to do, and that I was concerned I didn't have big dreams, or ambitions, or any desire but to live well and truthfully and meaningfully. But then I thought about the story that Don Miller wrote in his life, and how what he did was all related to a life he had already established. He already wanted to ride a bike. He was already avoiding his father.

I wondered what parts of my life I could explore more. I thought about evangelism, and how I much it meant to me to have conversations with students at my county college. I thought about apologetics, and how having answers and polished speeches is only so much. I thought of how very little I know about talking about my faith with people who don't already agree with me. I realized that I am quite afraid of evangelism. Part of it is founded on ideas about not forcing truth in people's faces before you know them, part of it is based on plain ignorance, not knowing what's expected and what's frowned upon. I also feel like a poser, but that is only because I don't know what I'm doing or what I'm thinking of doing.

I know people who go on missions trips, and I've never been one of them. I heard, a few months ago, about a group that goes to malls to witness. I wonder what street evangelism does. See, I just don't know. I think of the time I went to Streetlight Church, and getting to be with people I didn't know, and having fun teaching kids, and feeling like I was doing something good and worthwhile, even though I didn't always know what to say.

You know, (well, maybe you don't, but I mean the casual, thoughtful tone if not the exact meaning) there are a lot of other what if's besides "what if I started telling other people about my faith?" Some of them are more far off, just vague ideas that I toy with: what if I took singing lessons? What if I started getting art or writing published? What if I learned how to use design software? These are possibilities, new ventures, that are less scary. I think I'm going to download GIMP when I get a free afternoon. I don't seriously consider singing lessons because I assume it would take a lot of time, and I have no aims to be a professional singer. Though I think about Micah and Andrew, and other NCFCAers who have bands, and I think of Serenity and Suzanna and their voices and pianos, and I find myself awed by people's commitment to music. I wonder if I should start getting serious about some type of art.

It's very easy for me to just toss ideas back and forth indefinitely, and continue sitting at home doing the things I always do. I wonder if I need an inciting incident... or perhaps I need to actually care enough to think and move and act. It's not that I think I'm not doing good things now, it's just that I want to do more, and I am pretty sure that will involve doing things I don't want to do, things that don't seem necessary. (But don't worry Mom, that doesn't mean I'm going to let up studying for the Physics test next week. That most definitely falls in the category of things that I don't want to do, even if it's not something completely different from what I've done before.)

So I guess, I want to continue thinking of worthwhile what ifs. And then actually accomplish them. Also, do you have any wisdom to share with me about witnessing?

3 comments:

Michael said...

"I realized that I am quite afraid of evangelism." Oh, me too!

Hum . . . I think that I am inspired by this post, perhaps just challenged.

Echoes in Ink said...

I am not a brave person. In my mind, though, I do many things. So, I suppose I am more choked by my overabundance of aspiration than by lack thereof [J]

This is challenging. And I want to embark on this journey also.

Eunice said...

Witnessing:

knowing what you believe
knowing how to talk about
recognizing when a door to share has been opened
seizing the opportunities the Lord grants