What a weird night. For some reason I have a million thoughts and feelings swirling around in my head. Like I said earlier, Molly and I saw the movie Rachel Getting Married. NOT A CHICK FLICK folks. I didn't know a thing about it, but it was a very dark movie. More about symbolism and music and deep seeded family issues than the plot or story line of the wedding. Two people in love getting married in the midst of immeasurable family dysfunction. Kim, Rachel's sister, returns from rehab the day before the wedding. She brings with her a slew of bad memories and a dark past...SPOILER ALERT...including being the cause of her toddler brother's death. Yet, once all the fighting settles for a short period, Rachel bathes and cares for her hurting sister on the day of her own wedding. Kym represents a sort of prodigal son, and for Rachel, it is terribly hard to see her sister come back after rehab only to fall right back into their father's graces.
I think maybe the complexity of the movie just has me in a weird mood. After the movie a woman on the street asked me if I could loan her $2.50. She was short for a room to stay in. If you know me you know I cannot say no to someone on the street asking for money, no matter their specific need. Knowing I had a little cash I said I didn't because I wanted to pay cash for the ice cream Molly and I were going to get. When it came time to pay I couldn't use my cash. I dropped my ice cream on a table and went outside and jogged down the street. I found her and gave her the money. I acted like I was in such a hurry and I don't know why. She was so grateful. Happily said to me, "Bless you." And I jogged off.
I can't even tell you how many times I feel like I have missed opportunities like this. One of the things Steve Gardner said on leader weekend was in the context of urgings from God. Something that impacted me so much that I wrote it down on the cover of my journal was a simple statement: "When in doubt, GO." I think I am slowly learning how and when to do this. But tonight, I feel like I dropped the ball. I didn't even ask her her name. I want to know her name. God calls us to love people and I think I sometimes forget that that call means EVERYONE...not just people in the ministry that I am doing. It means college classmates, roommates, professors, people on the street, waitresses, family, etc.
I pray that I would be conscious of when the Lord wants me to move. I pray to be so in tune with his urgings that all I need is the tiniest urge and I GO. I want to know how to love people the best that I can, which I know means giving up some of myself. Giving up selfishness. Loving people for doing nothing for me. Loving people because I have the greatest Example to follow. I think this also means being vulnerable, which is immensely hard for me. It means admitting that I have weakness and admitting that I need help. It means not always having to be the strong one.
One critic of Rachel Getting Married was quoted as saying, "[it goes] deep into the joy and pain of being human." Isn't that real? Man there is joy and there is pain...we can hurt so bad and yet still we can love each other. "The elation and pain of being alive." But isn't it a miracle that in the midst of the good and the bad that we have Christ? To experience pain is to know Christ better. To know better how it feels to have him pick up the pieces. To know better how it feels to know his pain and love for us. To know better that pain and suffering will not be the end of us, but that ultimately, to know Christ means to see the joy in the midst of the pain.