thank you Calvin Miller

One of my favourite books is named, “The Book of 7 Truths”.  It is one of those rare gems that you can read over and over, yet it never disappoints to reveal the treasure of wisdom that seems to so readily apply to the very present moments of ordinary and extrodinary life. It also coincidentally, mentions, DeKalb, Illinois, the city in which my sister lives,- which only adds to the fondness I have for this book!  With hopes of not taking any wind from Miller’s sails here are the:

7 truths

1. Follow only the guide who’s been where you want to go.

2. The task ahead of you is not as great as the power within you.

3. You cannot help people if you are always with people.

4 Happiness is a choice, misery is an option

5. Wisdom lives only on the far side of pain.

6. Never love life more that reason for which it was given to you.

7. Stop living only when you die

I perseverate a little on truth number 2 these days:   The task ahead of you is not as great as the power within you.  I take comfort that with all the ins and outs of the days ahead, the transitions to come, the moments of uncertainty, the hours of waiting, the restlessness moments of both  joy and disappointment that I would realize that nothing I am about to do, is confounding, overwhelming, surprising, or challenging to my Jesus. 

I  have these moments when I ponder the 20 some odd suitcases that need to be packed, the house that needs to be sold, the many items (countless crayons, pacifiers, lego pieces, hair clips and 3 garbage bags of unmatched socks (I kid you not) that adorn the house that need to be separated, sorted and sequestered into some spot or another,- the support raising, thoughts of a new culture, people, place and language where I am overwhelmed.   I must confess there are hours where  I bask in self pity, looking only at the challenges ahead.  “Are we crazy?”  The thought seems to linger in mid air,-not spoken aloud for fear of the answer with which common opinion would likely provide us. And it is really not our own sanity that I am so concerned about, rather the details that need to come together to legitimate the soundess of our minds. I wallow for a bit longer in fearing the many impossible possibilities, and then, perhaps the Dutch in me kicks in, and I become too practical to linger in the realm of ‘helpless’ for any longer.  I transform self pity into some form of self-reliance, and perhaps just as sinfully, I take a quick indrawing of breath, pull myself together and say, ” you can do this”. . Maybe stemming from the fact that I am at heart an ER nurse, I am most comfortable with survival, the surefire remedy of ‘keeping calm and carrying on.”  Bite the lower lip. But…

I have decided that I am going to try a different strategy this week.  I am raising the white flag. I am not giving up on what is ahead,- but I am giving up on doing what is ahead within my own strength.  For the truth of it is:

the task ahead is not as great as the Power within.  

I am so thankful that this is truth, and for being reminded of it!  How little my universe is and yet it is contained inside and within the Hands of God. He knows it all, every facet, every thought, every hair every breath. He knows the stubborn streaks and the willful genes. He knows all the trouble I have been in, that which I am presently consipring to get into and the trouble that I will be in, and He still loves me. He loves me. He loves me. 

 ” O Love that will not let me go, I rest my weary soul in thee; I give thee back the life I owe, That in thine ocean depths its flow May richer, fuller be.” – George Matheson

So with the white flags raised upon the mast of life this week.  I am going to pray and praise. I am going to remember the Power within is much greater than the poverty of my own strength.  I am going to live (as George Matheson put it) with quenchless hopefulness.   For I know the love that will not let me go. It is the Love that beckons us to go,- and share that life altering, earth shattering, grace bestowing Love to so many others.