I became overwhelmed. Everywhere I looked, I saw pain and suffering and brokenness. Relationships, families, parenting, birth, poverty, racism, the food we eat, how our clothes are made, what we purchase, the love of things and money, the church itself, and so many more. I began to feel as though I was drowning under the weight of it all, and I began to retreat from the overwhelming noise of all the brokenness. "It's too much," I thought. "I can't do it all. I can't change it all. I can't even begin to process it all. It's just too much."
And it is. No one can do it all. But if we all do our part, if we all identify that thing that we are passionate about, and we devote ourselves to making a change in that area, imagine what could happen! It is not wrong to pick one area and go after it with all your heart; that is much better than spreading yourself thin trying to change everything. And God created us all differently, with different passions and talents and abilities.
It's always really neat to come across something in a book that reaffirms things I have already been thinking about and realizing, and as it turns out, Shane Claiborne actually mentions this in his newest book, Follow Me to Freedom, co-authored with John Perkins:
Our God is an artist. The kingdom of God is a place where every person is unique, just like our fingerprints... There are certain things we can say are clear gospel mandates- like caring for the poor and sharing the salvific love of Jesus with others. But Jesus doesn't tell everyone the same thing when He invites them to follow. To one person He says, "Be born again." To another He tells him to sell all that he has and give it to the poor. There is an unmistakable call in Scripture to "not be conformed to this world" (Rom. 12:2). But just because we are called to be radical nonconformists does not mean that we all end up doing the same thing...So lately I have been asking myself a couple of questions. What are my passions and talents, and how can I use them to help change things in some specific area of brokenness? What is my path? What did God create me to do? God didn't make me exactly like anyone else... but more on that in my next post. ;-)
It is awesome to see how everyone finds his or her own gifts and passions come to life and how different people take the pilot seat on their little piece. No one has to do everything, but everybody has to do something.
What are your passions and talents? How can you use them to make a difference in the world?