Originally published Thursday, 21 April 2016.
I sold out.
Why? I don't know, but what I do know is that sometimes it feels better to blame others...
Business school said if you wanted to succeed you needed to work for this type of company.
My parents said if you want to survive you need to do this kind of work.
The world said if you want to be recognized you better be rich and powerful.
So, while my heart said counseling, my ambition said business. I nodded and then obeyed...
And so it was. I scoured online for the best companies. I researched their in's and outs. I learned the details of their roles. I filled out application after application. I was a mad-woman on a mission who knew her destination - and neither potholes, nor roadkill, nor old dreams were going to stop me.
I became slightly crazed...
I remember the interview like it was yesterday. Two suited-folk leaned in; they grilled me. Each question they lobbed was meant to press me, to trip me up, but I didn't buckle. Instead I tightened my every muscle, made eye contact and said, "This has always been my dream job."
My replies rolled off like balls on a tee. I knew their mission like it was my first name. I knew their organizational culture as if I had grown up in it.
Their smiles were big and their body language said it all - I was in; I was the perfect candidate. I was a success.
Did I speak truth? Not at all.
Did it matter? Not so much.
One on a mission to fruition doesn't care so much about right intentions.
One laser-driven, can't often see where God wants them to drive.
I got the job.
I sold out.
Like Judas (Mk 14:10), the man who betrayed Jesus with a kiss.
We know him, right? And, we don't have much sympathy for his likes. Instead, we stand a little taller saying, "I would never be like him. I would never sell Jesus out for ______ (money, ambition, dreams, success, hopes, expectations, results, health, finances, etc.)."
But, would we?
Maybe Judas is a lot more like you and me than we think:
Maybe others told him what mattered - and he listened.
Maybe he didn't think so much about Jesus - as he did his end goal.
Maybe the world spoke that real power was getting in with "powerful types".
What are you chasing after, believing that it is going to deliver you to happiness?
If Christ isn't in it, you can be sure joy and peace won't be in it either.
The outcome is universal:
Judas/Destination Seekers say, "I sinned. I handed over (innocence) to be killed."
The world says: “We don’t care! That’s a problem for you, not us.” (Mt 27:3-5)
Just as Judas ended up a dead man, hung by his own transgression, so do we.
What happened with me? My ambition delivered the fruit of ambition: stress, anxiety and pain. I left this job not too long after I started.
Why do I say all this? This post isn't meant to depress you, it is meant to resurrect you - to your unique calling of God. It is meant to break your pre-established molds and frames and pre-established standards. It is meant to awaken you to God's unique and pointed call for your life. It is meant to help you listen to and then follow God, so that you can walk right up to his abundant life. It is meant to help you see beyond what is seen - and into the unseen. It is meant to help you do the one thing Judas' didn't do - say, "I am sorry God, your way is really the only way."
It is meant to help you consider, "What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?" (Mk 8:36)
Nothing is worth selling out Jesus. It's meant to remind us of that.
Prayer for Clear Vision
Lord, we want you. We mess up. We get our eyes thinking we need big apples to bite from. They never please. Help us to remember how sour they taste and how rotten they feel after we get a good chunk out of them. Help us to taste and see that you alone are good. You alone are worthy. Only your plans bring us through to our best plans. You have the greatest gifts in store for us. We don't want to settle for average and stress-filled, while you have abundant and peace-filled. Grant us the fullness of peace in our wait and calm through our storms so we can stick with you. Forgive us. We need you. Amen.
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