After all, it's the week of taxes. We ought to make mention of it. I read a great article about it here on Relevant Magazine's website in fact, and it got me thinking even more.
For one, how great it is to be too poor to even do taxes in the first place. All the money I technically earn goes straight to paying for my student loans. And yet, I'm not technically clergy either, so that makes some sort of difference I will probably never understand. Ah, but the fact that I am paying off my student loans means I am in debt, which is just a fancy way of saying that I am a...
(this is what I mean by being all over the place)
I am currently in the process of praying for my slavery to end. God has been doing some cool things to make this happen, but I pray for more. And done with this part of the rabbit trail.
So.. money, and getting places, or getting back from places. That is to say, I find myself, as often mentioned, en route to various parts of this country, or even to the city center, without knowing how I'll get home. I always get home intact. But it's more than this. I've had people--people I met that very week--pay for my bus home from the middle-of-nowhere-Buenos-Aires-(province) to Córdoba. Someone paid for my entire vacation's stay in Puerto Madryn. Various people pay for taxis, or let me spend the night in their homes. People who donate materials I just so happen to need that week for the girls' institute.
Argentina, or perhaps all of Latin America, is a "I know a guy who.." and this week I got to experience it with my dentist-slash-husband of my English camp's boss. We were able to take care of the much needed root canal right away (by the way, I definitely cried from the pain. Do your best to avoid the devil known as the RC!!). And when I warily came forth to pay my bill, I was surprised to see a lot less zeroes.
To think I almost had to pay, or try to help pay, over a thousand dollars to get that done in the States.
Rabbit trail numero dos: how do you feel about surgery in another country? The woman (dentist assistant) would ask me how I was feeling, but with the anesthetic I kept answering in English. Add to that the lack of vocabulary on my part for some things she was trying to explain to me.. one can only laugh about this sorts of things.
All this to try and talk about faith. This verse I keep coming back to in Proverbs asks to be middle class. That is (Message version):
Give me enough food to live on,
neither too much nor too little.
If I'm too full, I might get independent
and say 'God? Who needs him?'
If I'm poor, I might steal,
and dishonor the name of my God.
When we trust God to provide just what we need, we might get a little restless, because we don't see it until we absolutely need it.
Like when I bought my plane ticket to get here for one. The money had entered my bank account the very day that I had awakened with the sensation (Holy Spirit?) to buy the ticket.
Or taken from a comment from my roommate Eva, who just found out that she is going to Europe this winter (for most of you, it's summer), "Once again, I'm in a position where I need to trust God for a lot of money in a short amount of time!"
As the saying goes, if God wants you there, he'll get you there. Besides, as the other saying goes, it's not so much about the destination as it is knowing Him.
When we trust in God, sometimes we don't need to go on a faith trip to prove it, because everyday should be a faith journey. We ought to be ready (perhaps this is what Paul was talking about) for any and every opportunity. To open our eyes in the morning and say, "Whatchya got next, Pops?"
Nope. Not easy. Not by a long shot. Nor is it very safe. Perhaps we have to spend money to see God provide in other ways. I don't really know because it is not formulaic. But up to this point, I have never had to skip a meal because I didn't have food.
Ah! Beware of short rabbit trail. It killed me to see one former student write about not having internet or cable and thus her day was ruined (yeah, I also don't know how she was able to post this to the internet required facebook).
First world problems. Here's to selling all you have and following Him.
Here's to taking up your cross.
Here's to, at the same time, recognizing that your call may be very different from another's, so no room for judgment on who's call is "better." But um.. the cross usually requires sacrifice. Just sayin..
love and chau (another late night crazy talk from yours truly)...