My youngest woke me up from a deep sleep. That’s not an unusual thing. What was unusual, is how thoroughly and clearly I realized something as I woke up:
Somewhere, somehow, my stupid self has stopped praying for God to change me.
I’m going through some difficult circumstances. My current job has not invited me back for next year. It is heart breaking because there are things I love about the job, and more importantly, all false modesty aside I’m damn good at it.
When I’m feeling kind I say that there is a difference in vision between myself and the school leadership. When I’m feeling a little less kind I harp on the fact that my vision is consistent with the spirit of the law, is the one that is rooted in experience (the brand new principal thinks he gets “it” but he doesn’t) and benefits the most kids.
But all that is niether here nor there. He’s the principal. I’m not.
I have been a rather mopey and pathetic mess as the school year winds to a close. I have so much to be thankful for. Not just the obvious stuff like my health, my amazing family, or the roof over my head. But there are even blessings directly rooted in this situation.
God loved me enough to close this door: I would have been miserable next year, if I’d stayed. He’s reminding me that I’m bigger than my job. He’s reminding me that I shouldn’t work with emotionally disturbed adolescents to get the affirmation of the worldly power structure. He’s showing me– yet again– that everything I have and all that I think I am is not something I own, it’s just on lease.
I realized, as I woke up at about 3 this morning, quite suddenly, that I have been resisting all those truths: fighting them. I’ve been praying for outside circumstances to change so that I could deny these things a bit longer.
I don’t think it’s a problem to pray for external circumstances to change. I think the problem is when we only pray for external circumstances to change… Before he was crucified, Jesus said “I’d rather not go through with this.” But he went on to say “But it’s your will, not my will, God.”
In much less brutal circumstances, I’ve been praying, in lots of different ways, “I’d rather not go through this.” But I have been doing much praying “But it’s your will, not my will, God.”