I'm sitting at the train station, and watching people pass by tends to prompt these thoughts. This morning, it was a teenage boy, slight of build, wearing sunglasses and a golf cap with his Portillo's work shirt. It's a Wenesday morning at 8 am, late enough in August for school to be in-- all I can think, is why is this boy working so early, and having to get there apparently by train? And I'm mad for him, but also ashamed of myself for thinking full-time labor at 18 or 19 (?) is an unfair thing. I guess for Adam it's not (you know, his curse after the fall of Eden). But I think what really makes me mad is the lifelong righteous anger God has put in me for deception, we are all so deceived into thinking the rat race is IT and ALL and the ONLY way. What gifts has God put in that boy, what ideas and callings has he stitched into his being from birth that will be trumped and trampled by minimum wage and the message that any discontent he feels is wrong. Clearly, I don't know his story or how much he works but I've lately encountered and observed a lot of over-worked, discontent people. I'm learning and realizing that God made us to feel discontent with environments and situations we were not created for, but our controlling, safety-conscious selves will not dare take a risk and trust that He will provide if we step out in attempt to use our passions in our work-- or even find new work that utilizes those passions.
I am not exempt from this, my frustration is even (and intensified) with myself. I drown my gifts out of fear of mis- perception, that I would be thought arrogant or self righteous. So I fail to use those skills or callings at all. I feel like I'm repeating myself (have I mentioned this struggle here before?) and if I am, let it be a testament to how strongly and deeply it effects me. How aware I am, everyday, of that handicap I have-- one that I have been trying to overcome. And bit by bit, I am.
It pains me to see a multitude of people, dead eyed, going to and from a work or school they are imprisoned by-- money and provision are their shackles. But there is a God who wants to liberate us from that, in fact he already has. We only need to step out in boldness, into the well fitting shoes of our gifts. Explore possibilities, what would it look like to find opportunities to practice your gifts? Might God be calling you to start something? A fundraiser, a gathering of friends, a business, a conversation about an idea? Could we, for a minute, let ourselves entertain those thoughts of ways in which we could come alive and give life to others while we walk this Earth?
I ask myself these things, do you?