These last few weeks have been crazy. I’ve gotten myself kicked out of things that meant the most to me, some of my most valued things slipped through my open hands like sand. I was asked to leave an organization I had been apart of 2 years and lost an extremely valuable job. Why? Because I am an idiot. I wasn’t faithful over what I was given, and God as a response for people like that.
26 “But the master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy servant! If you knew I harvested crops I didn’t plant and gathered crops I didn’t cultivate, 27 why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.’
28 “Then he ordered, ‘Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one with the ten bags of silver. 29 To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away. 30 Now throw this useless servant into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
And so it was taken.
It’s funny how we look at the world when we have nothing much left. Some of us begin to blame or bargain. Some of us shut down emotionally. Some of quit. Some become angry. Some just cry until there aren’t any tears yet. Me? I distance myself. I try to remove myself from the situation and I study what I’ve done. I look at what happened. I become a hybridization of shutting down emotionally and being lonely and try to keep myself open and in touch with the world.
Is this the healthiest way to deal? Probably not, but everyone does things differently. That’s also for a completely different blog post. This one is about what I learned.
I learned about being comfortable, and how dangerous it is.
I live in Lafayette, LA for college at the beautiful University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Now being a city boy myself, I don’t consider Lafayette a city. There are no skyscrapers and downtown is like 4 blocks. This is a large town in my mind. As I grew up, I always imagined moving on, not staying where I was. I wanted to see the world, taste adventure, and always be on the move. But Lafayette has a different opinion. This is a place where people come to stay. I met a guy who didn’t want a certain job because he didn’t want to move from Louisiana. The dude started crying. Why would this guy be blubbering like a baby about moving from this place, that (in my mind) doesn’t have a lot to offer, especially in design? This puzzled me for a while. Then it hit me.
Lafayette is comfortable.
See, Lafayette is the happiest city in the United States. We love food, music, and good times. The atmosphere here just makes you want to sit down on a front porch and drink a tall glass of sweet tea. People do what makes them comfortable. There is no real city hustle and bustle. Everyone pretty much moves at the rate of whatever feels nice.
So what does this have to do with losing most of what is important to me? Because I recognized that I was like that guy. I was comfortable with where I was, which is why it hurt so much to lose those things. I wasn’t moving forward nearly as much as I should in my walk with God. I was jogging when I should have been sprinting. Why? Because I like routine. I like the same stuff over and over again. I hate moving into un-comfortability, even though I know I need to live there.
It was comfortable for the servant to hide the coins. It didn’t take much work at all to dig a hole and bury the talents. However, it does take work to invest into that money and provide a return. That’s why God calls the servant wicked and lazy. He had the potential to do more but decided against it.
And in a sense, so did I. God commands all of us to preach the Gospel to all nations, and I can’t just do this from the comfort of a couch, doing the same thing over and over again. Sure, that couch is worn in, and comfortable, and nice, and a beautiful place to rest. However, if all I do is rest, then I’m never working.
Now am I blaming all of what happened on God? Not in the slightest. Actually, I’m not blaming anyone but myself. I was not faithful, which in part was because I was lazy. I’m not saying that me being comfortable was why I lost the things I did, but it didn’t help me keep them. And God, in his wisdom, took it away from me before I did some severe damage, more than was already done. And so now, I don’t have what the additional blessings God gave me. And it sucks.
So reader, don’t be like me. Don’t get trapped by the comfort of wherever you are. I’m not saying leave college or your job. I’m not saying sell everything and live on the streets. But if God tells you to do it, you better do it. When we are uncomfortable by ourselves, we become more comfortable in Him. Am I saying we can never enjoy our lives? No. I am saying we need to be careful that we don’t get so caught up in enjoying life that we forget why we are here. Pray and ask God, where in your life you are standing still. Ask Him if you need to stay there or move.
Your walk with God is a treadmill. If you are not pushing yourself forward, you are really going back. And soon enough, you’ll find yourself on the floor, embarrassed and in pain. And if you find yourself on the floor, don’t stay there. Get up, and keep running. You can do it.
Don’t get caught in the comfort trap. It feels so good to be kept in its chains that you’ll forget you’re not even free.
And if that’s not scary, then I don’t know what is.