By now, many of us have started to recover from Jubilee – a time filled with learning, laughter, and a lot of challenging thoughts. One of the most vivid images I’ll remember from Jubilee 2010 is John Perkins on Sunday morning, leaning over the side of the stage as if he’s about to dive off of it into the crowd, beckoning for us to take the baton and continue the race he’s run so well.
But now we’re back on our campuses, in our homes, at our workplaces. As someone who attended a lot of similar events throughout college and into adulthood (though obviously, none as fine as this!), I recognize that familiar feeling of exhaustion and overwhelmed-ness that also settles in after a conference. Okay – I’m inspired. I want to do something. But where do I go from here?
Let me humbly offer a few suggestions.
Pray. I am truly but a student in the school of prayer, but I have found this week that when I know my heart is not in the right place, when I am overwhelmed by the sheer weight of what has happened, that the only thing I can do – and the hardest thing to make myself do – is pray. When I haven’t got the words, I turn to prayers that someone else has written – the Psalms, or perhaps a prayer book (I jump around but always come back to John Baillie’s A Diary of Private Prayer), asking for God to meet me where I’m at. And he always does.
So pray through your overwhelmed feelings, your desires, your fears, your needs. God wants to listen. If you ask, he won’t let the seed that was sown fall on fallow ground.
Read. If you were wise, you spent some time browsing the (truly extensive) selection provided by Byron at Hearts & Minds. Did you make a purchase? Now’s the time to start reading it. Learn. Understand. Exercise your mind and move beyond simply what’s required of you. Expand your humanity, and read more about whatever captured you – issues of justice, workshops you attended, ideas that filtered into your mind through talks or conversations.
Watch. Look around you. God desires for you to see your world with new eyes, to understand what he has planned for you, to fill your vocation as a student or professional and seek your future with an open heart. So keep your eyes and heart open. Write down what you see and ponder it. Don’t let the work of this weekend fade away.