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Friday, August 17, 2012

Be Sent [Explicit]

Rev. Curtiss's big thing for the past month has been talking about God as a sending God. The old model for Christian thought was that God is already everywhere and that we are following. He has been expressing the opposite, that we are sent as disciples into our workplace, communities, and homes as a precursor to Jesus. Jesus sends the disciples ahead of him , as in Mark 6, to prepare the way for Jesus as he begins his ministry. What makes this so important is that instead of finding Jesus before us we are instructed to go before him to ready the places where God will move among the people. I find this fascinating, and more inspiring as it places the responsibility on people of faith rather than trusting that "everything will be ok." Because maybe, without us trying, it won't be.

But what is it to be sent? How do you know you're in the right place? Are we preparing where we'd like to see God, where God wants us, or is it more subtle than that? I've been struggling with this and other questions as I continue my own discernment process. Am I being sent to the Jubilee Center? Or to All Saints? Maybe Hoboken generally? And what about a year from now? (I know I'm to comfortable because the back of my mind is already readying dreams & schemes to stay in the area, but alas, this soldier probably has a lot more tours in a lot more places.) Where will I go to seminary, is that being sent there? And after that? It's frustrating sometimes, knowing that I may have to be a bit nomadic, but also having my own dreams of where I'd like to be.

Those who know me well know that I tend to listen to the same music A LOT, and one of those artists is Common. Off of his album "Be" comes the track "It's Your World," which while it includes the "n word" is truly one of the most uplifting hip-hop songs I've ever heard, in that it asks young black people to aspire to more and dream bigger than the circumstances they grow up in and what they see every day. I don't see that message as limited to anyone. [THIS IS THE EXPLICIT VERSION] (Couldn't find a clean version on youtube, sorry.)

This song has been one that keeps me ticking after I take a licking. The second half of the song features a voice that simply speaks different sets of "Be ____" statements, all uplifting and encouraging. If there is one recent addition I wish I could edit in I'd make it "Be sent."

As I've noted on this blog before, I would've never guessed from where I'm from I'd have landed in South Africa, then the NYC metro-area, and especially the city I've fallen completely in love with, Hoboken. It's my world, some days I feel I fell into it, some days I think I made it happen, and while it's probably a combination of both, I am also really taking to the idea that I was sent here as well. I call it the Holy Spirit.

The last 2 weeks I've been both so tired and energized. I love the work I'm doing as development assistant right now, knowing that there is a direct impact on the kids' standard of living and quality of education.
So, as I begin to get myself geared up for the next stage of life, prepping for the GREs, etc. I get anxious and excited about where I will go to prepare the way for Jesus. God moves. Be Sent.