Monday, June 14, 2010

Crazy Love: Chapter 2


I just finished chapter 2 and like the first chapter, I really wanted to rush ahead & keep reading, but I'm forcing myself to stop & really let this chapter soak in before I plug ahead.

Chapter 2 is titled "You might not finish this chapter". At first, I thought he was saying that there would be information that might offend or throw people off the course of reading the book, but in fact, the author spends the chapter reminding us, the readers, of the brevity of life. This is something I've discovered & focused on more and more over the course of the past few years throughout personal tragedies & the losses in my friends' lives, but have never seen it put into words quite like Mr. Chan does.

His description of it goes something like this. (paraphrased) Our lives are like a scene in a movie. If our 2/5 of a second in the movie is a shot of the back of our head as we walk down the street, how arrogant would we be to rent out the entire theater & invite everyone we know to come watch this movie ABOUT US? The movie's not about us, but we all live like it is. He goes on to say it like this. In 50 to 70 years, give or take, we'll be dead. Everyone we know will be dead. No one will care what kind of car we drove or what house we lived in or what schools we attended. All that will matter is where we stand with God at that point. He challenges the readers to think about it & ask themselves...are you ready?

He tells the stories of several people whose lives were over in an instant, at times when no one saw it coming, lives cut short early in the game. We ALL know someone whose life ended that way. A child, a friend who was a young mom, a successful businessman running his own company. Every one of us has felt that loss of a sudden & untimely death. And the truth is, that could be any of us. A car wreck, a freak accident, a flash flood, a sudden disease. We really don't know. Are you ready?

Mr. Chan's take on stress & worry made my heart flutter. I love the way he describes our "justifying" stress. See, the Bible tells us "Rejoice in the Lord always & again I say REJOICE". It doesn't end with "....unless you've got a really stressful situation in your life". We can't somehow decide that our stressful situation justifies ignoring God's command to rejoice always. Do we really believe that our job/family/illness stress is somehow large enough that we have the right to disobey God's words telling us to rejoice in all things?

His definitions of stress & worry tickled me, too!

Worry implies that we don't quite trust that God is big enough, powerful enough or loving enough to take care of what's happening in our lives. Stress says that things we are involved in are important enough to merit our impatience, lack of grace with others and our tight grip of control.
These 2 behaviors communicate that it's okay to not trust God because the stuff in my life is somehow exceptional. Both worry & stress reek of arrogance. In the context of God's strength, our problems are small indeed.

Wow. I don't see myself as a worrier, but man....even I, queen of positivity (at least at my house), felt a stab in my heart on that one. Ouch.

This chapter conveyed over & over that we need to get over ourselves. It's not about us anyway! It's over in a heartbeat. We all KNOW that, but do we really LIVE that? Do you believe it enough to change the way you live?


SandyL said...

I think I am going to have to put this book on my list of books to read..

As someone who has lost my son.. I am coming to realize the most important things in my life right now are God and my family...

Material things will just sit here on the earth and rot away... When you are gone..what will you be remembered for...

I am actually quitting my job next spend more time with my grand daughter and my daughter.. It may be for a season...but I need to take care of me too...

Candice said...

Love those thoughts! I have not read that book but I like what you have shared...may have to get my hands on a copy.