Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage . . . They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion.
~Psalm 84:5

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Ordering the Disorder

So for a couple of months now I've been trying to read Ordering Your Private World by Gordon MacDonald. A former professor gave me a copy when I visited Baylor back in October and I thought, "Hey, this sounds like a book I should read." Well, I've been trying to read it ever since. After reading the preface three or four times I finally made it to chapter one. A few weeks later I finally made it through chapter one. But I kept trucking along, and now I am proud to announce that last night I made it all the way through chapter three! Yay, for me!!!
I made two observation so far, and since this is my blog I figured I'd post any epiphanies here:
1.) The third chapter is about driven people (versus the fourth chapter which is about called people). MacDonald spends time describing stress and the tremendous amount of stress driven people take upon themselves. Now, if you've met any of my family members you would agree that we are NOT driven people, in the sense that we do not seek the next big promotion with the six-figure paycheck, etc etc. We're all rather laid back, go with the flow.
So I'm reading through the anecdotes about over-stressed people and I'm thinking, "Man, these people have families to provide for and high-power jobs that take up all their time. Of course they're stressed! But I'm totally not relating to any of this; I don't have any stress now that I'm out of college. In fact, I don't even have a job! All I've been doing is sitting on my arse since I got back from England . . . Well, we did move to a new city and still have tons of unpacking to do . . . Hmm, and I need a job . . . I need to start paying back those darn student loans and I need to pay more on my credit cards . . ." And that's when the neon sign baring the letters S-T-R-E-S-S lit up and I literally said outloud, "Oh! I do have stress now!" I was actually, in an odd way, happy for that revelation. Then, I started thinking about how I could reduce my stress. That's when I looked around my room and the second epiphany hit . . .
2.) I looked about my room and saw half a dozen boxes stacked off to the left of my mattresses, where I was sitting. I haven't even put my bedframe together because I was hoping to refinish it, but my headboard and baseboard are still across the room behind my tall bookcase. Then I looked at the dresser to my right. There sat a few more boxes as well as a plethora of papers that included an old resume, a copy of my application from King's Arms project last year, and unsigned loan deferment papers. Scattered on the floor was packing paper and bubble wrap, and books were haphazardly stacked on my short bookcase. Then I thought, "Ya know, I think what MacDonald has been saying is true and the physical disorder of my room, and my life at the moment, is a reflection of my spiritual disorder. Ooooooooo."
Looking around my room at 2 a.m. last night/this morning, I decided enough is enough! And I am happy to report that today has been my most productive day since Christmas. I woke up and cleaned my room, shocking my mom in the process. I searched through jobs online and I even got dressed before noon! AND I went to the grocery store and cooked a curry for dinner! Tomorrow I shall continue updating my resume, finally sign and mail my loan deferment papers, and write some overdue letters. Hmm . . . maybe I'll even mail the letters . . . of course that would mean I have to go to the post office because most will be going overseas . . . but we'll just cross that bridge when we get to it.
Now I need to start working on the "private world." There are stacked papers I put aside because I had no place to file them, and there are books that I need to brush up on, one in particular (the bible, that is, not OYPW). I sure do need to tidy up in there, though. Hmm . . . maybe I'll start by at least reading chapter four . . .

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