It’s an oft-cited complaint: American Christianity is three-thousand miles wide and litte more than an inch deep. So they say.
The four of us, Anjie, Amy, and Daniel and I sat over dinner last night and re-upped on an old family tradition. Well, that may be overselling it a bit…we did this particular activity several years running when the kids were little. It wanted to be a tradition, and we got side-tracked somewhere along the way. Anyway, last night, we sat and gave it another whirl.
We set goals for 2010.
It will be a busy year, a year of transition for Amy and I. She’s off to pursue the acting career in New York after she finishes at Cincinnati, and I’m moving back toward the free-lance work that defined my life from 1996-2007. How will it all shake out? None of us know, but we’ve got lots of work to do, and most of it exciting and hopeful.
But I suggested a theme for the year, and I’m not sure what they’ll all do with it, but for me, it’s a thought that’s been nagging at me.
My new iPhone is the first piece of technology I’ve picked up since the whole computer craze began well over two decades ago that I’ve both craved and dreaded. It’s cool and useful, but it’s a gadget and distracting. Colors and apps and calls and tweets and games and general megabytes of cool come racing out of that little screen, and life is play all over again. Which is fine. But as the choices of buttons to push proliferates, I am just stunned to think of the speed of the choices that must be made. I turned 50 this year, and for better or worse, the clock of my life is ticking. Nothing new, but my earthen life is not infinite, and there remain good things to do. But I have to ask, “Which ones?” And that perhaps can only be discovered by asking the question that precedes the “doing” inquiry.
Who am I going to be?
I know, at 50, I should have the answer to this down pat. But if life is a journey, which we all say it is, then there is new terrain up ahead. My sense is that if God knows me, and knows this being named Jeff He is trying to mold and shape, then I have not yet fully embraced all of His vision, and I still work far too hard on my own. There is “being” work to be done, and it has to be done in the deep places of soul, prayer, thought, service, and love.
Perhaps the verb for the year should be “to plumb.” But how to do it? What does a “deep” day look like? Is it a particular sort of action, or a particular way of doing a thing? Is it not “doing” at all?
Just wondering…what would you tell someone who wanted to go deep in 2010?
How about something like…”to will one thing.”
Nothing new in the world…