A blog two days after another? Wow, what is this?

Ok, question for the day: What’s your responsibility in a given situation? The question seems simple enough. All that is needed to answer is to look at the situation, evaluate it, and then explain what you believe you ought to do. Fourth graders do it all the time. “Look at this picture. Little Tommy sees someone littering. What should he do? He should put it in the trash, Miss Smith! That’s right, Anne. Here’s a Tootsie Roll for you.” (side note: Anne spelled with an “e” at the end is much nicer than Ann. Just ask Rachelle, she knows how it is!)

However, I think there’s a lot more to it than that. See, Christ describes our obligation not as being to do a certain amount and then to stop… rather, he simply says that we must love the other person as we love ourself. Think about that. All those things that you wish someone would do for you… you’re called to do them. All the times you wish the lines of communication were clearer… you’re called to clear them. All the times you feel your patience has been stretched to the limit… you’re called to have even more of it.

The problem comes, though, when you try to figure out what to do in a given situation… and simply can’t. Whether it’s that you made mistakes in the past, or aren’t good at evaluating people, or aren’t sure of how others will react… you just don’t know what to do to help those you love.

That’s been the situation for me lately. A lot of people around me are struggling. Sickness, housing situations, busyness, relationship issues, and school are all driving people to the edge of their patience, and in many cases beyond. There’s nothing I would love more than to be there for people, to listen to them, to let them know that their friends are still here and that things are going to be ok… but I can’t. I’m not sure why it is. The most likely thing is that I’m just not handling relationships well enough. Perhaps I’m not good enough at reading people. Whatever the reason, I’m finding that few people see me as someone to turn to. Sure, I’m a good teacher. Sure, give me three days and a bible and I’ll wrestle with any theological question you throw at me. Sure, I’m a lot of fun when life is smooth.

But when frustration is high and optimism is low… nothing. Not a word. I almost have to force it out of people. They may let me know what’s going on, they may keep me up to date… but there’s not a lot of trust there. Neither, does it seem, am I wanted or needed when the chips are down. I’m an asset in the good times, but a liability in the bad.

::sigh:: to be fair, these things are only partially true. In fact, they’re probably mostly wrong. There’s a lot more trust than I would admit, and I imagine that personalities have more to do with things than a lack of trust. I just… I just wish I could do more, you know? I feel like my contribution to CCF is the same as the Voyager’s computer; plenty of information, but not really what you depend on in a crisis.

I know life will go on. I know there are a few who see me for what I’ve always wanted to be. I know, too, that God is the one who controls these things, and he’s watching out for those who hurt. But Lord, why do I struggle so much to find value in what I do? Why do the things I do feel so tainted?

Thankfully, tonight I was given yet another Samantha and Sewa therapy session; great food, great friendship, a goofy movie, and complete acceptance. Do I make people feel even remotely as comfortable as those two make me feel? I hope so, but I doubt it. They make the cloudy days seem not so cloudy, and that’s a great accomplishment. Thanks so much, ladies.

So, back to the question. What’s my responsibility here? How can I best love those around me without being a nuisance (one of my greatest fears)? What actions should I take to help them out? The only thing I can think of, at the moment, is taking care of as many details as possible so they don’t have to worry, and letting them know I’m there. Pitiful, if you ask me, but it seems to be all that’s wanted. We’ll see what happens.

On a side note, I had an atheist professor tell me I was one of the strongest believers he had ever met. Lord, thanks so much for that. When you’re frustrated out of your mind, a little encouragement from an unexpected source can go a long way. Finally, I see validation in attending Madison. Is a difference being made? Let’s hope so. Yesterday’s comment suggested that it is possible.

Isaiah 40:28-31

Have you never heard or understood? Don’t you know that the Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth? He never grows faint or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. He gives power to those who are tired and worn out; he offers strength to the weak. Even youths will become exhausted, and young men will give up. But those who wait on the Lord will find new strength. They will fly high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.

Till next time.

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