Yesterday, on my big Friday hike with Scout (5+ miles at Cincinnati Nature Center – it was lovely), I was listening to the latest episode of OnBeing which was a conversation between Kate Bowler (who is awesome) and Wajahat Ali (who is awesome). It was the first episode of a series OnBeing is calling “The Future of Hope.” This post and the next one are simply ones that are reflections upon two of the most significant things I heard in that initial listening to the podcast. If you wanted to listen (which you should), you can listen here or using any podcast app.
The first was this where Ms Bowler (who is reflecting upon her wrestling with how to live a life in the midst of treatments for stage 4 cancer in her 30s) says…
And it took me a while to — and a lot of hard conversations with friends to realize that there was a category I was missing, when I was trying to figure out what my life was for. And it was just — it was the feeling of being for something; being — I guess between work and vocation.https://onbeing.org/programs/kate-bowler-and-wajahat-ali-the-future-of-hope/#transcript
She went on to share about how she had to continue to find something to be for in the midst of her treatments. Yes, she was going to do her best to be a mother to her infant son and a wife to her husband, and a professor at Duke Divinity School, but how would she be able to continue to use the gifts that she herself was specifically gifted to do in the world? Maybe that was not the intent of what she was saying here, but that’s what I heard.
I paused the podcast and took some time as Scout and I walked to reflect upon what it is that I am to be for in the midst of being a father, a husband, and a pastor. What is it that I am uniquely gifted to do in the world? And then I remembered two photos that I have been wanting to share but not finding the words they went with until now. They are simply macros of sunflowers but they really spoke deeply to me – the colors, the vibrancy, and the details.
I think that one of the things I am to be for is to not as much to bring beauty into the world but to notice and to share and to encourage others in seeking the beauty that is already here. There’s so much beauty in the world and it is so easy to lose sight of it. So, here are two examples of life, color, beauty, detail, and wonder.