Wednesday, February 6, 2013

One on One--by Linden Malki

Driving on a crowded freeway,or looking at the bustle in an airport, I sometimes wonder where everybody is going-- each person is headed from different places to other different places. Every human crowd, group, organization, institution, gang, whatever, is really nothing more than a collection of individuals, some of whom exert power over others. Everything that happens is done by individuals, acting cooperatively, antagonistically, or individually. And we will each be accountable for one person--ourselves.
Whether we like it or not, most of us are not often alone. We are usually in some sort of interaction or being observed. We are constantly being witnesses to our priorities and our values, even when we aren't even thinking about it. Sometimes avoiding interaction is significant--our being "missing" can affect others.

God created us individuals, no two exactly alike, but He did not create us to be alone. What we do, and how we relate, can be anything from very positive to very negative. We are constantly being faced with choices--do we care about how others see as or how they are affected by what we do? Do we allow others to have too much or too little power over us? Do we respect our obligations and relationships? When people watch us, what are they seeing about our relationships--how we treat others, and what, if any, relationship do we have with God? We need to have our act together in the sight of God and our world, but we also need to realize that we cannot do this to His standards on our own. And its not up to us to tell God what we want Him to make of us--it's up to us to let Him finish making us what He intended all along, one on one.

He deals with each one of us as individuals, but He also works through us with the people He has put in our lives. It is interesting to look at these special people and trace back how they got there. Some are obvious--the family we were born into, but families, especially in the society we live in, take all sorts of shapes. I have two grandchildren who are adopted, and in both cases, the connection between the birth parents and my son and his wife were amazing, with God's hand very obviously present. Sometimes I think God compensated for my own nice relatives by giving me challenging in-laws. At a recent college reunion, part of one event was a time to share how we had gotten to a small, Christian liberal arts college; in most cases, through a recommendation by someone. One person I met at Linfield was from Calvary Baptist, San Bernardino, a place I'd never heard of before that, and how he got to Oregon, and how we got acquainted and kept in occasional touch through the years has God's fingerprints on it. San Bernardino is a very small town in some ways; I keep running into people that are connected somehow with other people I know or am related to. Just yesterday, a guy came into my store who had at one time had a shop across the street from us--but who is originally from Jordan and had known a missionary cousin of mine there. I'm beginning to have a vision of networks of people that form an amazing Family of God.

No comments:

Post a Comment