Thursday, May 14, 2009

Patience and Imagination

Some of the teenagers in our church are quickly nearing their graduations from high school. I’m sure by this point, they’re pretty tired of hearing (and having to answer) the question, “So, what are you going to be doing next fall?” It’s a loaded question, no doubt, for it is a question about becoming. At first, we may simply want to know what someone is going to be doing in three months – working? going to school? mooching off their parents? But no doubt there is a deeper question at play in that person’s heart – who am I going to be? When phrased like that, we realize the weight of such questions.

Molly Marshall writes of speaking on vocation to adolescents in her church. Vocation describes not simply what we do to make a paycheck, but also those areas of life in which we feel called by God. She recalls, “One bright-eyed freshman boy could clearly articulate his goal to be a cardiologist. In response, I asked the clinker question: ‘But what will it take to get there?’ With wisdom beyond his years and quiet confidence, he answered, ‘Patience and imagination’ – a remarkable answer for a fourteen-year-old . . . or anyone.”

Whether we are recent high school grads or whether we can barely remember our high school graduations, all of us are still in the process of becoming. We are constantly or at least should be constantly asking ourselves the question, “Who am I going to be?” The scriptures tell us that if we have cast our lot with Christ we are becoming more like Him everyday. What will it take for us to get there? Patience and imagination. Patience in the gracious hand of God that is at work in us. And imagination, I like to call it faithful imagination, to keep seeing that which is not yet but that by God’s promises will surely one day be.

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit – 2 Corinthians 3:17-18

No comments: