Thursday, May 25, 2006

Following Jesus with my Pañuelos

Pañuelos are the Spanish equivalent to Kleenex. I have used way more pañuelos in the past year than I might like. The subject comes up again today as I am battling my monthly respiratory infection. Being sick one week of every month this year makes me think, what is wrong? While some of my theories and solutions might be interesting, I want to offer a more universal observation. Basically the human spirit is set on having a good life, the best life. We all have our own vision of it. Whether it is considered or largely unconscious, we are in search of the good life. Parenthetically those of us from Nebraska may have a distinct advantage to the rest of the world, since Nebraska is objectively the state of "The Good Life".

This week on campus I asked a lot of students what was most important to them in life? The most common response is family. But one guy this week said health. A unusual response for young people, who usually don't consider that it is hard to enjoy life when you are not healthy. How do you know if you are living the good life? Well you have joy! You are enjoying life!

So here I am this past week, with too many things to get done, and a cold that is slowing me down, and frankly not enjoying life all that much. The weird thing is that when I get exhausted I find it can be harder to go to God. When I don't feel good I think I have this rather strange idea that maybe I can control God by not loving Him until he makes my life better. There are these frequent moments in life when I would rather have my way than have God! Of course God certainly doesn't become any less worthy of my love when my life doesn't go the way I would like it to.

I guess this is all as old as the serpents question, "Did God actually..." For me today it is "God, do you really know what is best for me?" Well if God doesn't know then who does? My own choices in life have shown me that I probably don't know what the good life really is. It makes sense the creator of life knows what is really really good. And it is Him! In a love relationship with God we have the best!

No, I don't think disease is God's best for me, but it does lead me to truly find my joy in what is best. Health is good, God is better.

"You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore."
(Psalms 16:11)