Sunday, January 25, 2009

Life in the Fast Lane

I thought I'd share a few points that pastor Greg at Bethany Covenant Church made this morning, because they're pretty pertinent to my life and to our society. He talked about the difference between a fast life and an urgent life. With fast-food restaurants, microwaves, and even speed limits, I think we can all agree that we live in a fast-paced society. In our routines, we go from one thing to another, sometimes non-stop, trying to pack in as much as we can in one day. Even if our routines aren't very busy, I think our fetish for fast is lived out through our attitudes as we're accustomed to instant gratification and impatient with delay or unnecessary changes in plan. As I settle into my new job, I've found myself impatient with traffic and really slow computers. At work I want to get as much done as possible as fast I possibly can so that after work I have more time to do as much as I possibly can, just as fast, before I have to go to bed and repeat the whole process.

And we call this efficiency.

The point of this post (and this morning's sermon) is not just to point out our fast-paced culture and encourage us to slow down, although that would be a good place to start; it's really about what we sacrifice in the fast lane, that is, urgency. Jesus did a lot of amazing stuff, but he was not running around tirelessly preaching, teaching, and healing as many people as he possibly could. He did not say that the Kingdom of God will come the more you do and the faster you do it. He said, the Kingdom is here, in our midst, in our hearts (Luke 17:20-22), and the question is, how do we respond? Jonah took forever to deliver God's message to Nineveh, and when he finally uttered the eight words of prophecy recorded in the Bible, the response of the Ninevites was immediacy: they "called urgently on God" (Jonah 3). Urgency... it is a matter of perspective, disposition to the gospel, and attitude; it is not a matter a speed.

I want to clarify that I do not think that business and efficiency, in their true sense, are inherently bad things. However, they easily foster the "fast life," which refers to that attitude. overwhelmingness, or that almost insatiable drive to squeeze more out of the day. The fast life is a life driven by the fear and lack of faith that God has provided more than enough for you to do and not nearly enough time to do it. Greg wrapped up the morning with a quote from his high school and college basketball years: "The better you are at a sport, the slower the game." Perhaps, the same applies spiritually. As we grow closer to God, life slows down but becomes much more urgent.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The First Day

Today I started the first day of my job, and with that, I realized that I haven't posted on here for quite some time due to the craziness of finishing my last semester of school. But don't fret! With the 9-5 job comes free evenings and weekends, which means I intend on posting more frequently than I have been. In the meantime, I want to give you a quick run down of what's happened and how I got to where I am now!

Last semester I started looking for jobs with the expectation of being out of Cleveland. Thus, I went to the Case Career Fair not expecting much either. Low and behold, I stumbled upon a fantastic company called Contained Energy that does renewable fuel cell research, which is right up my alley. Moreover, they are a small, very hands-on (everything from design, fabrication, and testing), and cutting-edge technology group. It was a perfect fit, so I couldn't turn it down... which puts me here in Cleveland.

The second really cool thing is that I needed a new apartment, off campus, but I didn't want to come home alone, bum around, and give up on my heart for ministry to the needy and to young adults. So, I started praying and asking others to pray for a guy roommate who had the same idea as me. A week and half later, I met Drew, a guy who just came back from Africa and was in the same situation as me. This past Monday we moved into a place near downtown, and we can't wait to get settled in and keep doing outreach to the people in Cleveland and on college campuses!

Well, that's my update; I tried to keep it brief. More to come later... so check back now and then and don't be shy to post a reply!

later gaters... kg