Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Going Through the Motions
This song by Matthew West (lyrics) sums up my life, pretty well, at the moment. Throughout the winter, and into the spring, I have been fighting (and mostly losing) a battle with inertia. Every time I hear it, it really hits me. How often do we just go through the motions, just trying to get through the day? Or, in some cases, the hour?
I find myself coming back to a book study group that I belonged to, at our sending parish, St. Timothy's, WDM, led by Rev. Jean Willis (a wonderful priest, and the first ordained Episcopal woman in Iowa). We were reading Margaret Guenther's The Practice of Prayer (HIGHLY recommended, if you're interested...), and I was deeply touched by a couple of her of her chapters entitled, "Finding God in the Ordinary - your kitchen will teach you everything" and "Prayer and Parenting - how to pray when the baby is keeping you up." I devoured her words, filled with sage and practical advice. What has stayed with me, almost 10 years after first reading that book, is what a blessing it it to seek and find God in the everyday-edness of our lives, that simple, mundane tasks can become a devotion, and an anthem of praise, and that even the act of caring for a child can become a prayer.
I have lost much of that passion over the last few months, and I really feel the loss. I don't want to just be "going through the motions" of my day. I really want to be aware, passionately aware, of the presence of God in every facet of my life. In the diaper-changing, juice-cleaning-up, laundry-folding recesses of my daily mundane-ness. Because if I can be passionately aware of His presence there, how much more will I be able to live a witness in the bigger moments? I truly want to live my life having given everything to His service. Jesus gave everything for me. I owe it to give everything to Him. I want to live with no regrets - no wondering if, somehow, somewhere, I missed an opportunity to be salt and light, because I was too focused on things that didn't really matter. I truly want to live my life with His passion inside of me, and have that be reflected in everything in my life, no matter how seemingly insignificant.
Sure, I will still make mistakes, and my priorities will still be out of whack. But He has promised to redeem that. I just want to give everything. All of it. And relish living my life in the knowledge that I left it all on the field, nothing held back, for His sake.
Now, I just have to get off the couch...
View Matthew West's own video of the song HERE. Slightly different emphasis, chronicling his own struggle with throat surgery.