The thoughts of a woman trying to live simply yet abundantly, contentedly yet expectantly, wisely yet adventurously... all for His glory.

8.19.2008

what satisfies?

Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Isaiah 55:1

I can, at times, be more than just a little dense. I can often look back and recognize God's hand at work in my life, nudging me through people and events to deal with issues in my life. Most recently I have been nudged towards thinking about what I'm doing with the time, money, and abilities that God has given me. At first this might seem similar to some of my past posts about my ongoing career indecision, but it is actually quite different. I've been approaching the question from the wrong angle, looking for what would make me happy and fulfilled. The real question is: how can I align more closely with God's heart and his work? That is what truly satisfies.

One of the many little "nudges" I've had recently was in this past Sunday's sermon, which I highly recommend but won't recap here. Aptly titled "It Won't All Fit," you can find it online at http://www.cccrochester.org/sermons/index.html if you are interested.

After church, I went out to a coffee shop and journaled copiously; some of those thoughts are echoed below.

I'm not sure but what my plush, comfortable life is quite empty and hollow. I may be a nurse, but it's easy to 'take care' of people without truly caring for them. My life here in Rochester is entirely my own, and entirely about what pleases me. I work as a nurse--which ought by definition to be a calling to care and heal--but I am not present in my work. In one of my college classes we discussed how God created work as a good thing, sacred even. Work ought to be an act of worship, but I find that I have not been worshiping through my work. Being at the Mayo Clinic has been more about the adventure than about faithfulness to God's calling. I've been laboring on (and for) things that do not satisfy.

I'm also holding on to so many things in life. Possessions, certainly, but much more than that. I jealously guard my time, especially my leisure and sleep time, and resent any intrusions. By choice I've become so comfortably insulated that it is hard to hear the still, small voice of God. What do I need to let go of in order to be able to more clearly hear His voice? What a radical question, and one to which the answer could very well be much more radical than I would like.

Not that it is impossible for me to labor for valuable things here at Mayo; not that it is impossible for me to discern the voice of God while living in Rochester; not that I 'need' another upgrade or adventure in my life. What I do need is a realignment of my values and priorities in order to better pursue intimacy with God. I don't want to love with my words or tongue but with my actions. After all, the gifts that I have been given are not for my benefit but for the benefit of others.

I'm not sure where this questioning will lead me, but God is working in me and I cannot remain unchanged.