Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Stalled Outside Complacency

It's been 10 days since my last post. I was lamenting the dryness I have been feeling. The dryness is still there, but the lamenting maybe not so much, but that isn't necessarily a good thing. Complacency is a dangerous place to set up camp, but I'm pretty sure I have at the least been checking the rates for the area, because I certainly haven't done anything significant to leave the area altogether.

It's as though my spiritual "car" has stalled, just outside of Complacency. I'm looking around, and I don't want to settle here, in fact, it doesn't really appeal to me at all, but it does not change the fact that I seem to be "out of gas," and I can't get my vehicle moving on to better or more promising territories.

The sad thing is, I am fully aware I have a gallon of gas in my trunk. Unfortunately the latch is jammed or something, because I can't even get it open to fill up and move on. This is it, this what sums up where I am at spiritually.

So the question is, if someone were going on to me the way I am going on here on the blog, what would I say to them? I know this is the question because I have a friend in my life who likes to pull this question out of the box to latch shut my own box of excuses. And I know what I would say, I speak the Christian cliche's fluently. "Press on," is a popular choice, or the well-known, "Don't grow weary in doing good," is another excellent option. I would tell them, "Get in the Word," and I would ask them, "How's your prayer life?" I would encourage them to "dig in" and to "connect," and to "fight." I would, I know I would.

And yet, here I sit, just outside of Complacency. And by the way, I know they aren't actually cliches. I know the exhortation is rooted in truth. I know this, and yet, I am stalled.

I think maybe the air is low in my spiritual "tires" too, and the gas mileage I was getting was affected by it. I've taken a few emotional dings lately, and it's slowing me down. I don't feel like I can get as far as I usually do, because the hurt is somewhat ever present. I guess it's like a nail in my tire. I pump the air back in, but because the nail is still there I suffer from a slow leak that again slows me down when the air gets too low. I can see the nail, but I can't remove it. So I try to move past it, but it keeps continuing in the vicious cycle. I pump up, and slowly the air leaks, again and again. The nail will have to be dealt with eventually, and I am more than willing, but I have to arrive somewhere where fixing or replacing the tire is a legitimate option, because here outside of Complacency, there isn't a tire shop to be seen. I might be able to switch to my spare, but it doesn't change the fact that the tire that belongs on my (spiritual) car is damaged.

A friend offered me some of her gas. She said, "come study the Word with us!" But in my heart I know our gas isn't compatible right now. She and these other ladies are sharing some terrific Premium gasoline, 92 Octane and all, but it's not the right place for me right now. My little pitiful stalled car needs to run on diesel or something. Sometimes you can't pinpoint the exact discrepancy, you just know when something isn't going to work. It's no disrespect for what has been offered, it just isn't the immediate need.

Are you getting tired of the allegory yet? I'm sorry, I'm a "word picture" kind of girl, and this word picture just seems to so aptly describe my current state I just went with it. And I'm still going with it.

If you've never found yourself stalled outside of Complacency, you really can't judge. The roads in these parts are pretty wound up. The signs are sort of confusing and not always easy to read. No one ever really arrives here on purpose, it's more about having gotten off track somewhere along the way, maybe a missed off ramp, or mistaken left instead of a right. You can't look at someone on these nearby roads and ask them, "What were you thinking??" Because no one purposely comes to this place. It's hot, and dry, and uncomfortable. It's a pretty lonely place too, here outside of Complacency.

So this is what I know, I have to figure out how to get back on the road, and head towards home. Complacency itself actually tries to draw me. It beckons with 4 star hotels, beautiful accommodations, no lack of food or recreation. You can settle in by the pool and have a snack delivered. You can head up to your room and snuggle in to watch a movie, order room service. You can lose completely any sense of need to travel anywhere at all. You can just charge up whatever your little heart desires, and enjoy yourself for a good long time. Hakuna Matata reigns in a town like COmplacency, it is ruled by the mentality of "play now, pay later."

The problem is, eventually, the bill will come. And Complacency has rates that you will not believe. I can't think of any place more expensive to stay. If you aren't careful, you could end up completely broke. You could lose everything you have in Complacency.

So, I guess I am in an ok place here in my stalled car. I haven't driven into the city. And today, I have no intention of driving that way at all. The question for now is, do I get out and walk up the road looking for the gas station I need. Do I try to push the car back up the hill of the off ramp that led me here? Do I try to thumb a ride with someone else to get me somewhere that I can find necessary provisions? Or maybe the journey will require all of these steps. I don't know the answer yet, but I do know, Complacency, is never an option, or at least, I hope it never will be.


Brook said...

For the past 11 weeks our church has been studying the life of Jesus. If you're interested, here are the messages from the campus we attend...
http://www.calvaryonline.cc/page.asp?sid=1&page=555. I wish I could remember what week it was...maybe 4/25...but each week we have several boxes on our communication card that we can check sharing a decision we made that day in how we are going to appoly what we learned in the message. My response was that I was going to step out of the victim role. No more, "poor me" or excuses for my behavior because of the trials that have happened in my life in the past five years. In all the time that Joseph as in prison, he didn't complain, but served God in the best way he could.

I'm not sure what's going on in your life right now. I just know that we got acquainted in a Bible Study about this time last year. I haven't kept up with you, so I'm not sure how you've been doing, but it seems like we're both back in the same stretch of road again. My hope is that in sharing my experience, no matter how brief, that you could be encouraged to get out the jumper cables and get your car moving girl! Paradise is straight ahead. On your way you'll pass contentment, joy, peace, encouragement and so much more. I hope to see you there!

Diana said...

Hmm... I hope this doesn't give the sense of me feeling a victim, or a "poor me" because I don't feel that way at all. I just feel stuck. It's hard to explain, but I'm not feeling sorry for myself, just sharing my struggle.
I like the jumper cable analogy though. :)

Brook said...

I went back and listened to the beginning of a few messages on our church's website. The message I was referring to was on May 16th. I'm listening to Pastor Terry's message now from Mid Rivers Campus since I hadn't heard his "version" yet. :) He's talking about the Grinch - with a heart 3 sizes too small - that couldn't get beyond the hurt from the past.

Diana said...

This isn't a hurt from the past, this is a very fresh, ongoing hurt.

Brook said...

Are there any roadblocks in your way of moving forward that you can remove?

I just wrote a post that will fly on my blog on Thursday about what's going on with me. Our stories and circumstances may not be the same, but hurt is hurt regardless of when it happened, esp. if it is still a struggle for you today.

I hope you have time to listen to the message, at least the first portion. I just listened to it again and was encouraged.

Diana said...

Trying not to feel defensive, which is why I think I said something in my blog about not judging me for being here. Anyway...

I disagree with you about hurt being hurt. Sometimes a wound is still open with no healing yet and it's more tender, it has to have time to begin to heal before you can move past it. Some hurt are like paper cuts, some are like knife wounds, and those too have different healing lengths.

Anyway, I disagree.