Julie Lyles Carr: Sunday Selah

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Sunday Selah

I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor."
John 4:38

Mike and I are generally behind on our movie-watching.
It happens when you're running that big household thing.

Not that there's some sort of character quality mandate in keeping your cinema viewing current.

So on those rare occasions when things get a little calm and we have a bit to sit, we've been trying to catch up.

And an interesting theme has begun to emerge.

There have been a spate of movies recently that deal with the storyline of being able to go back in one's life, to be able to 'do-over' and to learn, to view one's mistakes and foibles and create a better future.

Charles Dickens' 'A Christmas Carol', a la our times.
There's a lot of soul-searching and epiphany.

And a lot of purpose seeking.

And once the winds of past and possible future have blown through, once the main protagonist has learned his lessons and amended his ways, the score swells and the credits roll.

It is tempting, this idea of doing-over. Taking the lessons of time and applying them to an earlier season.

But what if the lessons and challenges of our lives are not just for us?

My ancestors traveled to this country many years ago. They left the familiar and literally sailed uncharted waters. They arrived in a land unfamiliar.

A few of their names I know. A few I don't.

Those ancestors chose regions to settle in. Marriages were made, children were born. Decisions.

Decisions that would impact future generations.

And as I look down the branches of the family tree, as the names and dates become more concentrated to the people and places I have known, I am struck afresh with how the way they lived their lives, the places they chose to settle, the churches they attended where they met future spouses, the lessons they taught their children, it all speaks into my life today.

And so what if part of the purpose of today is not about my goals and my dreams and my to-do list, but about a shimmer of future, a descendant who may never know my name, who may not have my memory in easy recall.

But whose life is impacted all the same.

I often reap from a field I didn't sow. And I'm sowing where I may not reap.

And perhaps that is what vision and purpose is about.


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