Friday, January 28, 2005

Reflections On Purpose and Pain.

Having a theological mind can be a pain at times.

See, I have this issue where I can hardly ever sit back and just enjoy things; my mind is constantly in a mode of theological reflection. Watching movies, listening to music, flipping hamburgers, it doesn't matter; I am always reflecting on things in light of Scripture.

The problem with that is that I have a hard time enjoying things for what they are. Rarely am I able to simply enjoy an experience for its own sake. It seems that there always needs to be meaning and purpose.

As you might imagine, when things happen wherein there is no discernible purpose or meaning, I get cranky. When I can't sense purpose, I have a hard time feeling hope, at least a God-based hope. I can of course make one up, but that isn't worth much.

Oddly enough, it isn't big events that cause me this problem. 9/11, Tsunamis, I can sense that God has a purpose behind those things. Its actually little things, well relatively little things, like heartbreak, that I struggle with. What purpose to having one's heart broken? I cannot fathom that. Maybe its because really big disasters seem somehow abstract and unreal. Not experiencing them first hand makes them easier to handle than the heartaches which are so personal and so haunting. Maybe its just easier to believe that a cosmic God would bother with a purpose for great global tragedies. Beside that, why should God bother with my bruised ego or crushed feelings?

But I know God does bother. He is intimately acquainted with all my griefs. He loves me that much. To find purpose in pain is really a matter of letting love break through the misery. But that means letting yourself be vulnerable to God. And isn't vulnerability what starts you on the path to heartbreak?

Thank you Lord that you will never break my heart.

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