For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to change the world. Maybe not so much change the world, as somehow matter in it. Or maybe even more specifically, to have mattered to someone.
A friend told me recently that in a large group setting a speaker asked how many in attendance could list the names of their great-grandparents. In a huge mass of people, only two raised their hands.
What is mattering in a space where you’re most likely forgotten in just two generations, even by your own ancestors? I oscillate between thinking this is terrifying and freeing. If no one’s gonna remember you in two generations, might as well wear those comfy brown sandals with black pants, right?
Nerdy clothing choices aside (both now and in the past), this desire to matter is what led me to teaching. In my small-town, many of the adult women who I saw working for a paycheck in a way that daily made a difference were teachers. While this desire to make a difference, this desire to matter has led me to good things, it has also time and again shoved me into a state of numbness as I try to somehow achieve myself into mattering.
In the last two-and-a-half weeks I’ve enjoyed teaching, meeting my new students, developing my classroom rapport, but outside of those class meetings, I’ve really missed the boat. It’s like I’ve been zombie-ing through my days. I’ve been tired. I’ve been grouchy. I’ve been annoyed at toilet paper rolls that don’t re-fill themselves. I haven’t made time to create anything, let alone write a blog post. Not that I have to be writing to matter, but my desire to create has always been a huge barometer that lets me know just how far I’ve wandered from God.
I know that when working full time I won’t be able to blog to the extent I have this summer. That’s just a reality of commitments and hours in the day. But. . . I know that just because I’m busy, that doesn’t mean that I’m truly living. If the task list is loud enough I can’t hear anything else–let alone the sound of God knocking at the door. What if I left a good friend standing outside my house knocking on the door for two weeks? Wouldn’t all of my in-house activity seem silly?
I wonder if while I’ve been busy planning, grading, tasking, tasking, tasking, if God hasn’t been quietly there knocking, almost chuckling, saying, “Look at my precious Evi. . . there she goes again, spinning herself up, when only one thing is really required.” I hope that God sees some progress in these fits and starts that make-up my life. I want my relationship with Jesus to be so much more than a big re-set button that I keep hitting as I ask for forgiveness again and again.
I’m starting to wonder if the real superheroes aren’t the ones who are run ragged with trying to do the best they can. I wonder if God goes, “There’s a SuperOne,” when we put all of those to-do’s in their proper place and take time to stop, take a breath, and answer the door. God won’t just show up and distract me from the requirements with my life. God will hang out and help out, if we’ll only quiet ourselves enough to realize the fun, enlivening, challenging, mind-blowing grace-filled, thought-provoking, heart-stirring, peace-enduing, ever-faithful friend quietly knocking, just waiting to come in.