a little more for me

This week has been all over. Less thematic than I often do.

So to follow along with the lack of theme I thought I’d go back to money. It’s just what’s on my mind and as you know if you read Wednesday’s post, once it’s there it’s just kind of there.

I was wondering what I’d do if I had $100,000,000.00?

What would I do if I had some outrageously large sum of money?

To be honest, it’s fun to think about. Great way to kill a half hour drive home.

Think about it. Tomorrow you wake up with One Hundred Million Dollars! What do you do?

First I thought about how great it’d be to give so much money away. Not like $20 here or there but to set out and say “I’ve got $10,000,000.00 to put towards ending poverty in the Waterloo Region” or “I’ve got $2,000,000.00 to support a real effort to end homelessness.”

How cool would that be!? You could be a part of making serious change.

The best part? I could give away $30 million, invest $50 million so I could keep giving millions away for years and still have $20 million to support my family. Pay for my kid’s school, pay down my brothers mortgage and STILL have loads left for me.

I’ve always wanted really silly things. A big house and fancy car aren’t’ really that interesting to me. I’d love to have a fridge full of the strangest beers, loads of energy drinks and a giant TV to watch while I drink them.

What would you want?

So much good could be done! If only I had more.

Then God had to step in. I don’t know if I can say He’s a jerk but sometimes it feels like He’s a jerk.

It was subtle too. He just slid in and asked “what if you just found $1,000.00 in your bank account today? What if you tax return this year was more than you expected?”

And instantly I thought of all the bills we have, the savings we don’t have enough of, the stuff I wish I could have.

Not even a cent for someone else. Just me…

It would be so easy to be generous if I had everything I needed. If I had all my cares and worries taken care of, I’d be the most generous person in the world. How noble of me.

I live a good life and I have more than I need now but still, if I got just a little more, it’d be for me.

I guess I still need a lot more work being other centred and putting others first.

How are you doing?

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relationship is the answer

I probably watch too much TV.

I do it because for me the world just kind of goes away. It’s a similar expense when I play video games. It’s just a space where for a few minutes my mind stops.

I don’t know if you’re like me at all but I really can’t stop my mind from thinking.

At home church while I drank coffee and talked about my week and what was going on in everyone else’s life I was still thinking about how our perspective of heaven impacts our daily life.

Do you do this? Does your mind just kinda go?

That’s why I love TV and video games. My mind stops.

I spoke with one of the guys at home church about how there is always something running in the back of my mind.

This all got me thinking back to a tough time in my life.

I’ve mentioned my father before, but I don’t know if I’ve mentioned that he passed away almost 3 years ago. It was a really hard time for me and I’ll share more about how that’s impacted me in the future.

But one major impact was that since I can’t shut my brain down I couldn’t stop thinking about it. So when he did pass away I started to think back to what I had done in the past.

It was my second year of university. I was sitting in class when my phone rang. I silenced it and continued to pay attention. After class as I walked out of the building and listened to a voicemail form my dad “hi Philip, we heard from the doctor. It’s not good. You should come home.” His voice was breaking as he fought back tears.

I knew what it meant. The cancer was back.

I meet my family in my dad’s office to hear the news face to face. I remember walking home with my brothers and thinking “I don’t think I can handle this”.

So like the mature adults we were we sat down and start playing video games. We played for hours.

It’s what I needed in the moment. I needed my mind to stop.

I didn’t need to think about how the world was changing and how my life was going to shift again.

I didn’t know what to say to my brothers and they didn’t know what to say to me but we knew we needed a moment.

What I didn’t need was someone explaining why it was happening or telling me it was all going to be ok. I didn’t need to be assured that God was in control what I needed was relationship and that day it was relationship with my brothers.

When we’re in relationship we don’t need all the answers. We don’t have to fix it all. We don’t have to have the perfect words or wise counsel.

When someone’s life is shaken to the core the way it is when you lose a job or are being forced to face death they often don’t need answers.

Sometimes all we need to do is be present. We need to bring normalcy.

Sometimes all we need to do is watch some TV or drink some coffee with someone. We need to sit and affirm that we are there with them in the darkness and that despite all the change that’s coming your relationship is still there, like it always was.

Football Mondays, late night video games, or walking the dogs together are still going to happen.

A lot of times people don’t need answers, what they need is honest and real relationship.

redemption

Last week’s posts have been more out there than most of my stuff. Not a ton of practical stuff, more ideas. I think this will be the last one. We talked about what holds us back in the past but I thought it was such an appropriate time to talk about why we try to live the way we do.

This is about what I think the one of the biggest meanings of Easter is and more than that what the cross was about. Surprise, surprise I think it ties directly to compassion.

I suspect that if you’ve been involved with church for any period of time, you’ve heard a lot about why Jesus died.

He died for you and for me. He died so you could be saved from your sins. He died so you could avoid hell and live in heaven.

While perhaps not wrong this way of seeing Easter misses the true breadth of what happened.

I think it’s soooo much bigger than just you or just me.

I think the real purpose of it all is Jesus calling us into His holistic redemption.  We are now able to be a part of the redemption of EVERYTHING.

The message of the cross is redemption for everything and everyone and we get to be a part of it.

That’s why we get to share God’s love and grace in everything we do. That’s why we get to dive into the messiness of people’s lives. That’s why we get to open our lives to others, darkness and all.

Because we are a part of the redemption of everything. We don’t have to do these things, we get to.

Jesus didn’t come to save you from hell. Jesus came so you can be a part of Him redeeming everything.

If you don’t think that’s compassion then I feel like you and I are talking about two very different things.