8.00 am. The light trickles in through my curtains and pierces my eyes like flaming arrows. My legs ache. Breath tastes great. I’m late again and I desperately hope I’ve made a mistake and its Saturday, lie in day.
I wrote last time about being an ordinary radical, following jesus radically and obediently in the local everyday. Man it’s so much harder than it seems when writing about it. Its follows the same idea as taking up running…
I remember a time a few years ago I realised I was not quite as fit as I wanted to be and so decided that running was the new regime that would bring peace and affirmation to my mind. I diligently wrote out a weekly plan of when I went running, purchased some new shoes and even bought a special ipod holder for runners. On the first day with excitement, hands trembling I opened the front door and embarked on the first of my three runs that week. After two minutes of feeling like the next london marathon champion I soon became uncomfortable, achey (and out of breath) and realised this whole running malarky is a heck of a lot harder than talking and thinking about it!
It’s the same with the christian walk I guess, following Jesus in the hard times and in the daily routine of life. It’s been a hard start to this whole ordinary radicalism but I’ve noticed some differences, not world changing differences, but differences.
Trying to be someone who loves people is so difficult yet in having the ambition to do so it’s been amazing to see where that ordinary deed has led, like talking to a friend about Jesus, just by giving someone some time and respect. Just by doing odd jobs around the house (or trying to) out of love seems to be a blessing. Its so easy to dismiss these small occurences and still dream of something more radical (and i still very much do) but yet these small acts open up the doors and bless Gods people. How radical is selfless love in a rather self centered society.
The one thing I’m really struggling with is loving God, it seems silly because I know deep down within the chasms of my soul my life’s aim is to love and follow God. I sing it passionately and try my best to follow his ways, yet seem to miss out on this whole relational side of loving God. But it’s not as if I don’t love God at all, it’s just I seem to forget about loving him in the ordinary, sometimes! When I sit and stop, usually in the stillness of my bedroom my mind naturally drifts to the latest football scores, girls or the more deeper pondering on my future. How I long to instead drift constantly back to God 24-7. I’ve been blessed to be a part of the bible in a year and this has really helped put God at the centre of my thoughts more regularly and given me a real deeper love for God. Its moments like this where the gift of prayer, direct communion with God appears to be so precious… Lets try to people of prayer.
I once heard in a lecture that one monks aim was to know the spirit of the Lords’ presence in every aspect of his life, when he was praying, doing the dishes and when he worked. Just the sense of knowing the presence of God with you makes such a big difference in the way we approach things, we often stop and look through the eyes of Jesus and see what God’s spirit is doing. I want to be like that and this is the new challenge of my ordinary radicalism. Radically Love God in the ordinary rhythms of life. The great thing is when loving God he loves us back, in fact he loved us first (1 John 4:19). This adventure isn’t about a massive guilt trip, instead its about embarking on a relationship with the creator of the world and the giver of life.
How I long to gain anywhere near that, and yet with the help of God and a determined heart I feel as if I am continuing on my adventure down this path, step by step…
“If our god is with us then what can stand against”