Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Why "Interrupted" made me cry

My recent read through Jen Hatmaker's revised edition of "Interrupted" provoked a crazy need to underline.  I'm not normally an underliner.  It wasn't until my second semester of University that someone mentioned they highlight.  Oh.  My.  Goodness.  Marking a book?  You've got to be kidding me!  This has always been a no-no in my perfectionist little rule-following world.  However, I was transformed and went from reluctantly underlining in pencil to highlighting in with fluorescent highlighters that cannot be removed.  It changed my world.

When I read this recent version of "Interrupted" it was a digital copy....You can highlight and remove and re-highlight and change colours and whatever else you want to do.  And, you can pull up the list of highlights.  Hello world!  This is not what made me cry!!

This week I have been reflecting on the things I highlighted.  Trying to make sense of what it means to be broken by God and desperately wanting to be put back together.  To find a way forward.  To know what it is I need to do with what God is showing me.  Overwhelmingly, my highlights were focused on how we need to transform the way we walk our faith in ordinary life.  How Jesus' life showed a love-first, sold-out poured-out for others  way of life.  About the hope that we have and how just loving others completely, practically, in the places they are is the most effective way to show them who Jesus is and who He wants to be in their lives.

"Our only hope is to follow the example of 
Jesus and get back out there, 
winning people over with ridiculous 
love and a lifestyle that causes them to 
finally sit up and take notice"
                                     ~ Jen Hatmaker, "Interrupted"

I cried my way through this book because not only was there a line in there just for me ("Are you a teacher?  Your school is a mission field, plain and simple"), but the whole way through there is this thread that reminded me....As Christians we are called to just love others.  This is what Jesus lived.  Not just to offer 'church' with its programs, events, Bible studies and all its various ministries.  Although those things are not bad or wrong; in fact many of these things are quite good.  But just to love others authentically, in relationships, in lowly places, with real people.  To love "ridiculously".

I don't know what that looks like for me yet, besides that I called to teach.  I'm trying to be content with the process for now.  Jen says this part of the process took about six months, for her.  I need to just be patient (not really my thing!).  I know my season of preparation is nearly done and I don't know where I will be planted next year.  In the meantime I am contemplating, reading, reflecting and praying.  And crying.

I wonder if the tears will ever be done with?

In the meantime I can love on people where I am right now...I just feel so tied because of the things I need to be doing right now.  And my kids wonder why I insist on "payment in hugs"!


Emily @ Have A Laugh On Me said...

I've never been very good at being patient but I know if I can ever master it then my life will be much more peaceful. Emily - visiting as part of #teamIBOT (but you know I'd come anyway)

EssentiallyJess said...

I haven't heard of this book, but I love the sound of it. I like it when Christianity is made simple and we get back to the basics of it. Sometimes I think we overcomplicate the whole thing, but Jesus just loved people.
Thanks for sharing.

Kate said...

Hi! I'm jumping over from IBOT and loved reading your post. I haven't heard of this book either but I love the tagline about Jesus wrecks your comfortable christianity. It honestly becomes about debating and who can come up with the cleverer comeback when really, all that matters is Jesus and our relationship with Him. He calls us to love everyone and leave those who stress, frustrate, anger or annoy us, leave those people to God, to still love but trust in God's trust, in his time not ours. Look forward to reading more!

Rel said...

Fabulous review, Tracy - love your personal and deep reflections xo