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Date Posted:09/10/2008 11:42 AMCopy HTML

Hello,

Just a few things I am struggling with lately, and my reasoning behind them.

For the last ten years or so I have been really struggling with the fact that my life seems like a Mc Donalds existance.

You grow older, you get a mortgage, you get a reasonable career at a large corporation, you drive to work, you do your shift, you go home, eat, do housework, may spend 15 minutes thinking about God, the world or anything else, you watch TV and then go to bed and wake up the next day and do it all over again. 

Then on sundays, you go to church.

My life seems like it is completely futile, except when I go to church or get involved with the Alternative Technology Association ( been a menber for 10 years) or dream of an alternative lifestyle.

My problem is is that I just cannot go on much longer the way it is.

I know that I am bound to provide for my family ( in my case my beautiful daughter) and as a single parent I think I am doing ok there, but I need more.

So i have decided to sell the house ( really bad timing presentltly ) and then I can pay the mortgage off, and free myself up.

My plan is to try and work part time and then use the time left to give myself to study and service to others in a Christ like way - eg: volunteer for involvement in needs ministry or something.

My Anglican clergy are advising that it is a good thing.

Have you ever thought of this, or have done this?  I am just needing some re-assurance or warning or something that I can use to see what others are thinking in regard to this, so i can guage if I am just on a pipe dream or if it is a reallity worth pursuing..

Your feedback or questions would be appreciated..

Mr K



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Re:Futile Lives - Is it really neccesarry?

Date Posted:09/10/2008 6:36 PMCopy HTML

Hi Paul,

 

I believe there is a time in everyone’s life that they come to a situation like yours. A certain “preacher” long ago (Ecclesiastes) and even though he had everything life could offer at the time, he could see it was all vanity. Sometimes I sit at the TV or in the café watching people go about their daily routine, driving and scurrying about as if there is no time left, and I think, what in the world are they looking for?.

As with Solomon some seem to have it made, while others struggle to make ends meet. What good is it striving and living only for all this material wealth in the few short years we exist here, at the end of the day, we all die and what then. We can’t take it with us when we go. Most of the time it cannot be enjoyed, because of sickness or heart attack or stroke or something else, look what’s happening with super and the economy at the moment.

I was awakened to this vanity many years ago, and I think I have told this story previously, An old friend of mine, I called him Uncle Bill, was a bachelor and for many years worked hard for the shire council. He was the most “scrooges” type person you could ever meet; he wouldn’t go out or spend any money for enjoyment or whatever and saved all he made. Bill always talked about and looked forward to his retirement, which after 40 years working with the shire, was presented with a watch for his services and finally left.

I asked him what he was going to do now he was free, he told me that he was going to Melbourne to have a big spend up and start to enjoy life. The next day Uncle Bill took the train to Spencer St and from there a tram into the city. As he got off the tram, he was run over by a truck and got killed.

So from all this, it begs the question, “What does man gain?”  It presents the conclusion that although the employment of human labour and understanding provides satisfaction of accomplishment, the profit achieved by a person is cancelled by death.

We need to work out our priorities, hey?


"Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man" (Eccl. 12:13) 


Ralph

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Re:Futile Lives - Is it really neccesarry?

Date Posted:09/10/2008 8:44 PMCopy HTML

Paul it sounds like you and I need to buy some dirt bikes, you can drop your daughter off at my place and we go have some fun at Kinglake, then have coffee like we did once with your road bikes, remember getting stuck up that really steep hill in that deep rut. Those were the fun times. And there are still more to have,  life if what you make of it.

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Re:Futile Lives - Is it really neccesarry?

Date Posted:09/10/2008 11:52 PMCopy HTML

Paul,

We ALL struggle at times, especially when it comes to determining what to do with our lives and how to make a difference - you're not alone there buddy!

I think you answered your own questions though - you said that you enjoy the times you are 1) in church and 2) get involved with the Alternative Technology Association or dream of an alternative lifestyle.

If these are the things you enjoy, do you need to consider pursuing them more seriously? I believe that every single person has been given gifts or talents to be used to further God's kingdom here on earth and to help others. For some, it may be the gift of teaching, for others counselling, for others the ability to be involved in a particular business or other specific activities. I'll take it a step further and say that I believe that until we actually FIND what it is we've been created for (God's plan and purpose for us), we'll probably feel as though we're 'looking for something' but not know what it is.

I'm only just now (in my 50s) discovering more about myself and my purpose in life and I fully intend to press on with my search until I fulfill what God has purposed for me in this life. I just want to live for Him and do what He wants me to do and that is my prayer each and every day.

It is quite normal to feel as you do, we all go through such feelings but may I suggest (in love)that you seek God first for answers rather than rush out and do what you 'think' or 'feel' is right for you. You said that you want to pursue working in a needs ministry - do YOU feel God is calling you to this? You also said that your clergy are advising that it is a good thing - do THEY feel that God is calling you for this purpose? I'm not saying that He's NOT, just that you need to follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit.

As a start why don't you tell us a little more about alternative technology - e.g. I'm fascinated that you should have such a keen interest in it.

Kindest regards, Urch

Your unfailing love, O Lord, is as vast as the heavens; your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds. Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your justice like the ocean depths.
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Re:Futile Lives - Is it really neccesarry?

Date Posted:10/10/2008 12:14 AMCopy HTML

 Hi Mr K,

First consideration has to be to your daughter.  How old is she?  Have you talked with her about how you feel?  Because whatever decision you will make will affect her.  You sound like a good parent who would take into account your daughter being well adjusted and provided with a stable environment in her life and education.  Just looking on the practical side as we all suffer restlessness at some stage during the sometimes daily grind and routine of lives. 

Look forward to hearing from you.

Yours in Christ Jesus.

Epi



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Re:Futile Lives - Is it really neccesarry?

Date Posted:10/10/2008 12:21 AMCopy HTML

 Hi again Mr K,

Forgot to ask,  "do you live in a city or are you in a country area?"
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Re:Futile Lives - Is it really neccesarry?

Date Posted:10/10/2008 12:52 AMCopy HTML

 Hello Urchin,

I certainly feel a calling for something - definately not for being a priest!  Maybe at the very most a Deacon!

But The thing I know for sure is that I need to make some changes to make it happen.

The Alternative Technology Association is more along the lines of Sustainable living, solar panels, Electric cars, etc...


Hello Epi,

I am in the outer suburbs, and I plan on staying there until my daughter has finished schooling.  I more need to free up my time.  Ditching the mortgage will be good, then I don't have to be bound by it, opening up a new way of life.

I discuss these things with my daughter, even if she is only 7!  She really is such a good thing!  I can still provide for her with a part time job..

Urchin is right - I will have to dig in a bit more and ask the Lord for clarity. 

The urge to change things and move into a Christ centred vocation was niggling at first, now it feels like it is getting more urgent, but that could be me making more of it than should be.

Well, prey for me please!

Regards PM


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Re:Futile Lives - Is it really neccesarry?

Date Posted:10/10/2008 11:10 AMCopy HTML

Hi again Paul

I've looked up some notes I took from a talk I heard around 5 months ago by Paul Scanlon, a visiting pastor from UK.

He talked about finding our God-given 'shape' & he reminded us that WE are not the potter, God is, and we are the clay. He also said, you have to find out what your 'shape' is, not what someone else thinks it is - and as you do, your contribution to the planet unfolds. Our 'shape' is not negotiable - God has already preordained and predestined your life. Only you can discover your 'shape', no-one else can tell you what it is. Your shape is inside you (how God made you as a person) not outside, it is how you are 'wired'. Your inner pupose is about WHO you are - your outer purpose is WHAT you are doing and it is secondary to finding WHO you are. In the western world we put our value on 'doing' not on 'being'. Find out WHO you are and how God wired you to find out your shape. Endeavour to discover it and move into it and God will still use you while you are finding your 'shape'.

Also another talk by Helen Monk from a women's conference I attended recently.  She spoke about the will of God in our lives. Where the will of God is for your life, grace overflows in that area of your life.  We all have 'grace gifts' Romans 12:6-8. We're all passionate about something and this is usually our 'gifting'. Peter was a self-appointed speaker, Timothy was a server & loved tasks and Paul gave him more instruction than anyone else. John talked of love, his gift was mercy - he was mercy-motivated. When we see a grace gift in our lives, use it and develop it in our lives. We  usually have one motivational gift - do all things in life using this gift. Be who you are in your gift, it makes you sensitive in that area. It is a grace upon your life so flow in it. Work with what you've got, what's right in front of you that you can use to bring glory to Jesus. (e.g. sometimes just a few kind words can 'unlock' other people)
Don't worry about failing, worry about what you'll tell God when you didn't even try! Examine what we've got that we can use, to bring the message of hope to a lost generation. Wherever the grace of God flows, it will bring life and grace to all. She then went on to talk about courage and having inner strength to make changes etc
 
Sorry if this all sounds a bit 'fluffy'!

Urch
Your unfailing love, O Lord, is as vast as the heavens; your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds. Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your justice like the ocean depths.
RCI prophesies
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