Friday, November 09, 2012

The Zoo

(A Deeper Storyby DL Mayfield
If you wait until you got time to write a novel, or time to write a story, or time to read the hundred thousands of books you should have already read – if you wait for the time, you will never do it. ‘Cause there ain’t no time; world don’t want you to do that. World wants you to go to the zoo and eat cotton candy, preferably seven days a week.
–Harry Crews
It’s true: world wants you to be distracted as all get-out, to flitter and flutter until we are too tired to do much use. World wants you to bounce around social media, gracing everyone with your thoughts on every little thing. World wants you to watch stupid shows about inane people experiencing one trivial problem after another, wants us to think it hilarious when people consistently fail to engage each other on a deep level. World wants you to buy more, on trend, on sale, because the faster you buy the less you care about the hands that make. World wants you to be a consumer, preferably seven days a week.
Church can be much the same too. There isn’t any time for contemplation, for shades of discourse, for prayers without words or answers that don’t match ours. Church wants you to have a happy family, the job that you want, the things you need to feel blessed and secure. Church wants you to be political, but only once every four years. Church wants you to evangelize, to make sure everybody believes just like you do, the only plain way to read it. Church wants you to go out and do some good, but keep it light and happy and fixable, worthy of a picture or two. Church wants to bus you in for one week year, to work with the poor and powerless. Church wants you involved in studies and retreats, ESL classes and outreaches, preferably seven days a week.
World wants us to be busy, because then we can’t get into any real trouble.
World wants us to be spectators, congregants, hearers of the word; because then the Church can’t write the story she was born to tell.
But kingdoms built on love take time; time we don’t have to spend anymore. Relationships only grow when there is mutuality, where no one is the benefactor, no one is the needy. Engagement only comes when everyone else is more interesting than you, where you are blessed to learn. Jesus wants us to be prophesiers, truth-tellers, teachers, helpers, people who speak in holy languages; Jesus wants us to be servants, merciful souls, givers, and healers.
Jesus wants us. May your kingdom come.
Post by D.L. Mayfield
Image from Getty Images.