Friday, October 8, 2010

life changes

My life is so different from when I started this blog. It's pretty wild when I think about all of the things that have happened in the last few years, the way my life has been bent and molded and changed. At times it has been absolutely overwhelming. Sometimes it has been frustrating. And other times, exciting...but never boring.

Right now I am 27 years old. I am basically living day by day, hoping and praying for the best. I am in school again and the joys and frustrations of college life have taken some getting used to, trust me. I have been writing papers and taking tests. I've been discussing things that I haven't thought of in years. Most of my classes are English courses, and they are helping me to become a better writer. Of course this blog doesn't show that...I neglect it far too much.

But the main way I have been changed has been in my faith. I've seen God work miracles in my life. There are things I can't explain. People have randomly come to me when I've needed encouragement. My parents have given me so much in regards to love and support that I could never repay them. I couldn't ask for better people to have in my life. I have been loved and helped by people for my entire life, and I am truly learning to do the same.

This leads me to the meat of my post. Thanks for sticking with me so far.

The other day, I was driving home from school. I had been in classes all day, taking tests and quizzes, and I  was extremely tired on my journey back to my apartment. As I drove, I saw an old man on the side of the road standing beside his car. He looked lost, sad, even scared. I continued driving, thinking about that man. He looked like my Grandpa. But I didn't stop.

As I took the next turn, I heard a still, small voice speak to me deep in my subconscious. It was saying, "Go back." I ignored the voice, as I regrettably sometimes do. I kept driving, thinking about the nap I would take when I got home. I turned another corner and the voice became louder. "Go back!" I drove a little further until I could swear I heard a shout. "GO BACK!"

I turned on my blinker and pulled into a driveway. I sat there for a moment, thinking about what had just happened. How could I be so selfish? The man needed help. Was I too important to help him? Was my life really so special that I couldn't be bothered by some old man? Regret filled my mind, and I pulled out of the driveway back toward the man and his car.

As I approached, the old man was sitting in his car. It was in the same place, and he was resting. I rolled down my window as I got closer to him. "Are you okay, sir? Do you need any help?" I started feeling good about myself. I was truly being a good Samaritan. The old man looked at me and said, "No thanks. I ran out of gas, my wife is on her way with a gas can. Appreciate it though."

I was a little miffed, in a weird way. Here I had driven back after a distinct call to go and check on this man, and he just dismissed me? He didn't even need my help? Why did I bother? I couldn't figure it out.

As I drove home, a thought entered my mind. The point of going back to check on the man wasn't so that I would do a good deed for the day, or that I could say that I tried. The point was that I listened to God's calling. But the larger, uglier point was that I had initially dismissed the call. Twice. I was very saddened by this. I beat myself up in my mind for the rest of my commute. It wasn't until I got home and sat down that I understood the real gravity of the situation.

Christians are called to be like Christ. What does that mean? That we go to church and smile all the time? Or maybe that we fight continually about issues? No. We are supposed to do what Christ did, and that is to offer help to those who need it the most. This old man needed help. It is possible that I could have helped him if I had stopped immediately when I first saw him. Instead he got his wife to assist him. I almost missed an opportunity to be like Christ by doing something that He never did: I thought of myself before others.

It was quite a lesson to learn. Then, another way of looking at the situation hit me just as suddenly. Regardless of whether or not a person needs your help, you can at least try. The odds are that most of the people who have encouraged me lately didn't know that I specifically needed encouragement at that particular time. Sometimes I receive it when things are actually going great. It doesn't make it any less special.

So a summary of my thoughts as well as a small piece of advice to you, dear reader, is to not ignore God's call. Never underestimate what He is trying to teach you. And don't overthink every situation in your life. Every experience of your life is but a small piece of a much bigger puzzle that you can put together little by little. Life makes much more sense when we just push our thoughts away and simply go.


Anonymous said...

I have this type of thing happen more often than I like, only I rarely answer the call. I open doors, I try to pick up dropped papers, and even offer a smile to passing strangers; but when I lay in bed at night and look back on my day I always notice a point where I could have been less about me and more about anything else. Sometimes I just do not know what to do, and so I keep driving or walking, or sitting motionless.

Adam Robinson said...

I understand that completely. I hate how hard it is to try and be "perfect". Not fun. But God's grace is the thing that keeps giving us chances. I just get down when thinking of all the opportunities that I've wasted in my lifetime.

But I do believe that we are called to try. And thankfully we get more than one chance. Thanks for the comment, and for reading.

AmbulatoryCorrie said...

lovin this post and the fact that you blogged after so long! Just was looking through my old posts and was so encouraged by the fact that I AM so different, because God is changing me every day. So thankful! And you are too!