How to Start a Revolution: Hear the Wanting, Part 2
Yesterday I started this series, so catch up here with Part 1.
Sometimes we don’t know ourselves very well. If you want to begin a revolution, spend a day and just take note. Spend a day, and wake up to your own wanting.
I don’t want to assume that you’re like me at all, but you could be, and if you are, then:
look yourself in the mirror and hear what comes out of your heart. You think your eyes aren’t bright anymore. Touch the age spot there, darker now. Want a visit to Sephora for some magical creams. Make a plan for your body or just want a plan desperately. Stand on the scales and let that decide your hope. Want for beauty. Beauty is power. You would never say this, but you act it out. Want a magazine that tells you how. Want what will tell you how to be better at wanting.
In the pantry, say “not enough.”
Stand back and look at yourself. Take note every single time of “not enough.”
At the closet, wear the same shirt you always do. Want for more. Want for beauty more. Hail the style. Imagine yourself on your next outing. What will your clothes say about you? Who are you? Expect more of yourself. Walk to your phone. Hope with all your heart your inbox offers a promo code for Madewell. When you wear your dress, tell your friends about Madewell. See how many people look it up. Notice how your words have buying power. Hide the shoes you bought this month. Let money carry the weight of guilt. Watch how your desire for beauty overpowers your guilt. Or you think it will. Watch your efforts to heal yourself with wanting.
Don’t talk about our consumer-driven culture, but hush. Hear your own thoughts. Walk the dog and think about your yard. Want the flowerbeds. Let the desire for a garden consume you. Want land. Want to be a farmer. Unload the dishwasher. Want dishes that match. Want to get more of the good coffee. Want a better coffee maker. Want sugar. Want to taste sweet all day long. Want to be healed.
Write a blog post. Want to be understood. Check back in ten minutes. Did anyone care? Is your platform growing? Think hard now. How can you make your platform grow so you can know that your words matter? Want the gift of powerful words. Want power. Want to have something to offer. Want to be known. How much do you want to be known? How often are you thinking about being known? You don’t know the answer to this until you’ve asked to see it. You literally must be healed of it.
What consumes you? If out of the heart the mouth speaks, what do you talk about? It’s okay. You can’t resist the things you don’t know you’re thinking. My life is built on nothing less than what I buy and what I sell. Even now, I am selling.
When I came home from Haiti, I spent a few days to really know it. Every wandering of my mind was a want, and every want led to another want. There’s nothing wrong with the wanting, right? God made the beauty. He made the flowers, my voice. But spend a day and realize what’s woven into the wanting. Realize the POWER. Realize the self-soothing and the scheming. Realize how even when you prop your feet, your mind is consumed.
Hear the wanting around you. See the lonely-hearted. See your own lonely heart. Want for friends. Want for community. Go to church and want them to make it better. Look at the bulletin. What do they have for sale? What will their Women’s Ministry offer you? Do you buy it? Is this our economy?
My husband stopped drinking alcohol, but let me suggest that we’re all addicted. This is our culture. I say start your own revolution because our culture has given definition to American church. It’s the grain of our wood and the swift of our current. The American Church is caught in the undercurrent of consumption, and it’s not just consumption. This consumption, the buying and selling, has become our own slavery. Slavery, where children work for the shirt on your back? Yes that and also slavery, where upstanding ministers have to package faith and sell it at a good price so they can keep food on their own tables. It’s in the letters our missionaries send home so you’ll keep sending checks, when so often many of them don’t even know what they believe any more. How do we deal with suffering when the fruit of what we’ve bought lands us in despair and hopelessness?
Look around you. Do you see the plague? Do you see the paralysis, despair, and hopelessness?
Watch the dear ones around you walk away. Watch them walk away wanting something that sustains. What they had been calling the church is not what sustains. What do you really want?
Tell me. Do birds sing anymore? Is the peace in your heart so gone that you can’t hear them sing? Where is your silence with God?
Decide now. Spend this weekend. See for yourself what consumes you. What do you want? Will you ever be satisfied in the one that you call god?
Hear the wanting. This is not a drill.
After you know what it is you really want, come back Monday so we can talk about what to do next. Also pray. I know the rumblings, the beginnings of a revolution, but I don’t know how to finish one. All I know is eyes on Jesus. All I know is that we’re to reassemble out from under a syncretized faith. Let us not forsake this assembly.