Hey everyone. Let’s get to it. I’m in no mood to pussy-foot around. Today was shitty. I’m sorry for the vulgarity, but you’re gonna have to take it or just go read someone else’s proper blog. Essentially I was hit from just about every angle possible over the course of the whole day. Here. I’ll tell you about it and maybe it will seem ridiculous because it’s really not that bad relative to people who experience ethinc genocide or people who have cancer, but it was a shitty day for me. I suppose there are shittier days for a wide variety of other people though…That helps a bit thinking of it that way.
I woke up and remembered that I had to do a presentation on Wednesday. I remembered in the shower, the first place of peace I am offered in the day. I like to stand there and wake up gradually. What happened instead was I woke up really fast because I remembered the presentation and the lengthy article I needed to read. Well frick guys. That just pissed me off. I had time to read it yesterday, but I forgot about it and I was frustrated and on top of that frustration I added the stress of needing to read the article sometime today.
I went to the chapel to talk to Jesus…It did not go well. I was stressed out and nothing was happening, I wasn’t really getting anything out. I wasn’t being comforted. I wasn’t being admonished…nothing seemed to occur. That was the next frustrating thing.
Then I went to class and listened to my professor discuss for an extended period of time his interpretation of Max Weber’s metatheoretical assumptions with a highly intellectual student. Sometimes I wish that we could just learn without intellectual grandstanding. In the overall environment of my day thus far I experienced this as a reminder that I am not a sociology major. The things that are important to them…are not so important to me. Frustrated I turned to my right to see a girl that I sort of dated looking really amazing. That wasn’t great either. It brings up questions like: Why didn’t things work out? or Why is it that she has to look good? or perhaps Why can’t I be her friend?
After this I went to my Spanish class to be surprised with a delightful B on the test that I thought I had owned. Apparently Dr.Baah decided to grade harder than he ever has before in any class I’ve taken with him. Well, balls. That sucked too. Maybe a B doesn’t seem bad to you, but I’ve got a pretty high standard for grades. I want those A’s. Anything else isn’t what I desire to see on anything that comes back to me. Maybe that’s the perfectionist in me speaking…In any case the book we’re reading deals with doubt and faith and suddenlt I found myself beset by the desire to try and see if I really believe what I say I do. Struggling with doubt is one of my least favorite activities, next to bowling or stubbing my toe.
Next stop in my day was a nice lunch. An interesting transition to my day, I spent some time with my friend Nate Goodwin. I love this guy. He’s a breath of fresh air in the pedantic mask-wearing existence everyone seems to live in this christian community that we live in. He’s refreshingly real. We had good conversation.
I then talked with a good friend of mine for an extended amount of time about my life. When we were done I realized something biggish. My relationship with God has been about me pursuing perfection in that relationship more than it has been about me pursuing God. The perfectionist in me has siezed my relationship with God and forced upon it the expectation to be perfect. To be without flaw. My friend pointed out the fact that we’re human. As such we are broken and imperfect. We need to be okay with everything we experience being that way. Relationships with God are imperfect because we are and things with other people likewise. It’s interesting to realize that you’ve been quantifying God your whole life and measuring your relationship with Him in terms of time as opposed to realizing that what God wants from me is for me to pursue Him the way I pursue a relationship with a girl…without obligation. Out of the depths of desire for being around Him. Let me clarify, I don’t know that I really know what a relationship with God looks like. Sure, it looks like talking to Him and reading the bible (says the Sunday school answer), but if these things for me became merely outward attempts for perfection in the relationship rather than a means to experience God and be around Him and be surrounded by Him….Then perhaps they don’t help so much, at least not in the way I’ve been using them.
That was good to realize, but then I went to my next class and became irritable and sweaty (hanging lights does that to me). My next step was dinner with the boys and then coffee with Paula Green. She’s got herself a new boyfriend. He seems cool. He blogged in response to a blog I wrote. Apparently I’ve got something worth reading here…I went and read his blog. I read it too fast and then became frustrated with the way he characterized me. But when I looked at it again he was pretty accurate. I misread it and felt judged, that seriously impacted the rest of my night. I was actually fairly depressed because of the way I had again MISREAD his blog. That was silly. If you’re reading this boyfriend of Paula Green, perhaps you’re right. Maybe I am asking the wrong questions.
I carried my general put-off disposition to staff meeting where we were supposed to have fun. I just wanted to see everyone and be around them. Yet, we did a scavenger hunt. I really dislike scavenger hunts. On top of that I was grumpy and depressed because of the way the day was going. I am not a competitive person by nature, so when people are all about something competitive and I’m not in the mood to play their game and be carried away by their enthusiasm I get dejected and frustrated with everything about the place I’m in. That was my evening. We went to JJ’s father-in-law’s boat and it was pretty smooth, but it took me awhile to get into the groove of staff time because of the way things were going thus far. I asked God to give me something. I was basically at the end of my rope today. I had had enough of everything. I wanted to crawl into my bed and not wake up for anything other than a homemade breakfast that would occur in a place without problems or study abroad applications.
I came back to the floor and played Mario Kart with the boys for a bit. I won. First place. Rainbow Road. 150CC. In your face Kaleb, Aaron, and Troy. I hope you all cry yourselves to sleep. That was my last race…the other ones I didn’t win. But a final decisive victory feels nice. Then I read the article I talked about earlier (interesting), and reread Paula’s boyfriend’s blog finding out that I had misread it. and then I talked to the Lord.
I mostly argued with Him. I told Him I had no idea what I was doing in this relationship. I didn’t know how to go about seeking Him. I told Him that He would have to do something because I was out of ideas. I told Him I didn’t want to be good or perfect, that I just wanted to pursue Him (it’s true). Then I found this strange sort of peace. I think Jesus wants us to throw down. I think he digs it way more than the sort of half-assed “bless my school-work” prayer we give Him sometimes….Maybe I’m the only one who prays that. That’s not all I pray about though…don’t read into it too much. It was just the first example that came to mind. SO. FINALLY. At the very end of my day at about 1 AM today, I felt good. Not good in that I had checked off a box on a list, but rather that I had pursued God and when that happened….He was there. Good ending to the day. Maybe it wasn’t so bad after all. Hmmm….
Last thing: I was thinking about this. War kills people. I don’t like it. I feel like we have examples of people doing things without war and violence and achieving big things. South Africa, India, the civil rights movement in America. People died in these movements, but they took no life in the process. They won, but they used no violence to do so…I listened to a public radio report on the Truth and Reconciliation Commision from South Africa. It was a governmental organization made to help facilitate healing in the brokenness that was the South African experience following apartheid. (an oppressive system that made black people less than people) A woman on the commision talked with the man who sent death squads to kill people from her town. She saw him as a human being, she saw that he had a heart, even if he was the man who took from her something she can never have back. She forgave him. It was stirring. If that can happen, if those who suffer at the hands of evil men can see in those evil men people who deserve forgiveness…who says we can’t change the world without violence?