Goal orienteering off the precipice

I’ve been reflecting on a few conversations I’ve had this past week or two. I wont name the few people who contributed but I do value them highly. I’m pulling this from my memory which is only usually ever good for names and faces but here goes,

“Rebecca, if you are [thinking of] quitting work, changing your uni course, maybe slowing/ceasing gush stuff… (some other stuff), then what are doing? What are you going to do? It’s like you’re starting back from nothing much.”

What a horrible paraphrase and I’ve probably totally misquoted him, but you get the gist i.e. Have you thought about all this seriously, is it really the best thing? (How I interpreted it).

It has been a week or so since my, ‘chuck the trowel’ moment and I’ve hopefully wisened up slightly, it was helpful to have this person list the stuff in front of my face and in essence and without meaning to, point the word ‘quitter’ at me. I am occasionaly prone to being quite stupid, dare you to misquote that one. What gets me is that I am usually someone who HAS to finish things, stick them through, rough it out, complete them.

The conversation I had with Burkie the other night also focused around descisions, namely the uni tribulations. After some ranting…

“I suggest you work out what the hell you want to do before it comes to changing courses.”

I am a goal orientated person. The last year of school posed huge problems as I couldn’t come to a descision course wise and so had to aim for a score without any backing motivation. After exams it got no easier, another reason why I ‘took a year off’. In a sense I delayed things. Dad found my now uni course in a tiny advertisement in the paper. It was (and still is) brand spanking new.

A goal orientated person without a goal is a failing ninny, and so the goals get smaller and more short term in order to accomodate the need of a planned ‘forward’.

He asked me if I had an ultimate dream job/career. Although a career would be great, I don’t think it’s what I’m going to revolve around. I find it really hard to visualise possibilities for the future. My ultimate career at one stage long ago was photojournalism. I mentioned this and then threw in a, “It doesn’t seem realistic” comment.

Being the fine practical person James Burke is, he started talking about getting a list together (goals wise) I do believe it was around careers and our conversation careened off to prayer and being proactive about praying consistently for things this. Praying consitently and not limiting ourselves to what we think is realistic and possible. It calls to mind the often pulled out of context verse of, “All things are possible with God”.

“What I’m trying to encourage you is not to be limited to the faith you do have, but the faith you should have”

Which has the truth of Ephesians 3 in it.

My immediate response (NB I was massively frustrated at this point) was, “I know if I ask (God about all this stuff) I’ll start getting disatisified and unsure and frustrated all over again about the ‘unfinished’ working it out business, which I’ve layed aside due to some ‘go with the flow’ nature I picked up somewhere along the way to help me cope.”
So a smack in the face revelation that came out of my own mouth and I realised it out loud, “In retrospect this is totally anti-who I am.”

We don’t often bother with pestering God about what we don’t think is possible. I think I generally do the ‘trust enough’ to get me by and often skip addressing some of the issues that are ever-present.

I was reading some of Deuteronomy 15 tonight, about the year for cancelling debts.

“However, there should be no poor among you, for in the land the LORD your God is giving you to possess as your inheritance, he will richly bless you, if only you fully obey the LORD your God and are careful to follow all these commands I am giving you today.” – Deut 15:4-5

The Hebrews are given this awesome covenant and if they hold up their side God is going to
“richly bless” them (and thats just one thing). As you might know they fell out of keeping God in the highest place sometime down the track as the pattern so goes. Full obedience can’t be an easy thing. What struck me as I was glancing through, was that perhaps they didn’t trust God enough to follow through or they didn’t grab the magnitude of what was on hand, in order to strive to and remember to be fully obedient.

In Wild at Heart (yes thats right, I do read guys books sometimes) Eldredge quotes Gil Bailie (p.200):

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

He then goes on to mention how David didn’t fit Sauls armour. Saul could not see how it was going to work and so had to ‘try it on him’. The impossible task of killing Goliath was possible but not like how Saul pictured it.

I think we often severly doubt what God can do wether we really realise it or not, be it simple complacency in not ‘dreaming big’. I’d love to have ‘great faith’ but I know I don’t. I however do know that I have a great God and I guess this is probably a good place to start.

I have studied many times
The marble which was chiseled for me—
A boat with a furled sail at rest in a harbor.
In truth it pictures not my destination
But my life.
For love was offered me and I shrank from its disillusionment;
Sorrow knocked at my door, but I was afraid;
Ambition called to me, but I dreaded the chances.
Yet all the while I hungered for meaning in my life.
And now I know that we must lift the sail
And catch the winds of destiny
Wherever they drive the boat.
To put meaning in one’s life may end in madness,
But life without meaning is the torture
Of restlessness and vague desire—
It is a boat longing for the sea and yet afraid.
-Edgar Lee Masters

Oh look, he’s written one about me. There, be shocked. Really I am just as disturbed as he is about me being “goal-less”. I guess I’m that ‘flailing ninny’. I do have an idea of what I want to do in some way it just has to encompass my interests. Just find me something with writing, photography (not necessary), theology… and don’t you dare suggest writing for a typical Christian magazine, talk about dousing a career before it begins.

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