Thursday, May 12, 2011

What Am I Going To Learn Today: A Path to Sanity and Perhaps Grace

"We don't work to earn God's blessing, we work because we already have it."  a tweet from Matt Chandler (pastor from DFW area) based on a teaching from Romans 12.  All scripture is a good read, but Romans 12 is a great spot to visit often. 

Anyway, that thought struck me, in conjunction with another thought;  there is a new study out titled Duty or Delight...I have no idea if its a solid study, but I love the title. 

Both comments come from the same root: faithful living in contrast to faithful thinking.  It's a lens to consider grace and daily bread as a concept or a reality. 

These ideas are floating around the reality of the very ordinary. 

The idea of responding to God's grace by giving and living in grace most all Christians agree with, but the evidence of our thoughts, minds and general cranky martyrdom (is it just me?) that permeate environments points to an conundrum:  what we agree with in theory does not show up in work and attitude.

How to make the move?  One thing that has worked me recently, is to approach any and all work--face the day--with curiosityWhat will I learn today?  If my posture is as a curious student, then generally the day is productive--I do learn things, about people about circumstances.  It's not all good, but it's always fresh.

If my goal and motivation is to learn I am in a much better place to grace--even if I am leading or teaching or parenting.  It focuses my attention out, in a good way.

Example?  This morning, my friend Ellen wrote a great reflection about the Christian "f" word (FINE), you can check it out here--she put "fine" in way I had not considered. 

In a committee meeting, study group, as I read and research and write--I really do learn so much, if  that is what I am after and I adopt that posture.   The key?  If that is my primary objective (as opposed to my comfy old postures of seeking approval, getting "it done", or establishing my rightness in situation) I have landed on more delight and less duty. 

It's so much easier for me to ask myself, I wonder what I will learn from this?  Rather than, "OK Carol have a grace filled attitude about this meeting, report, meal, event, bill paying, weed pulling, vet visiting" opportunity.

I move from a position that emphasizes process to one that emphasizes people, and it allows for much more joy to come into the equation.  It also emphasizes what's coming, not so much my standard pit stop to the disappointments of yesterday.

All is not perfect, I still am too cranky and quite a martyr in my work as team mom (too many annoying details) and my "to do" is is too long and I stress about things that I am overseeing and I am tired of driving around North Atlanta for hours at a time (note how privileged that list is that drives me crazy--hmmm need to ponder how I am spoiled)  So, I am a work in progress-but at least I am not too old to learn a new trick.

1 comment:

  1. "I move from a position that emphasizes process to one that emphasizes people...." Love that idea. Not only do I focus on process, I add in a big helping of "put-upon" (Alack, alas, look at everything I have to DO. Heave big sigh) and presumptuousness (I am SO BUSY. No one else could possibly be as busy as I). Gag.

    Thanks for the shout out, btw!



About Me

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Roswell, GA
Loves to find the answers to three questions of a sound Bible study: what does it say, what does it mean, what difference does it make?