No Big Deal
I often forget that it’s my turn to write for the blog until sometime in the evening when I’m sitting around and I suddenly realize that I don’t know what day it is. I’ll turn to whichever family member is closest and say, “Hey, is it Friday?” And they’ll reply, “No, Tim, it’s Saturday.” And I’ll say, “Oh, hey, guess I ought to write something, huh?” After being on nocturnal duty for a week and then having my boss switch me back to working at 4 AM again, this happens to me a lot. It happened today, and I managed to guess which day it is correctly, but when I sat down to write I stared at the blank screen and realized that I had nothing to say.
Then, after trying to think of something to say, I realized something more important: I had nothing to say, and that is okay.
I know that that doesn’t sound like a big thing to realize, but in a world where we can say whatever we want, whenever we want, to everyone in the world in a huge variety of different ways, it’s so easy to slip into the mindset that every single thing we say is a big deal and that everyone needs to hear it. Our generation seems to think like this: If I have an opinion, I have to air it. If I did something, I have to tell everyone I did it. If I like something, I have to tweet it and blog about it and Facebook it and put it on StumbleUpon and Tumblr. Why? Well… because I can, I guess. I mean, my life is a big deal, right?
Wrong. My life is not a big deal. Do I matter? Absolutely. Am I here for a purpose? Most definitely, and it’s a spectacular purpose at that. But that doesn’t make me the center of the universe. That doesn’t mean that every word I say and every thought that crosses my mind is worth its weight in gold. That doesn’t give me an excuse to make a big deal out of myself when what I should be doing is making a big deal out of God and out of the well-being of everyone else around me.
So when you find yourself with nothing to say and the urge to say something anyway, fight it. Just sit and listen to other people for a while. There’s always someone saying something, the world won’t suffer if one of those voices goes silent for a little while. In fact, I think the world would be a better place if we stopped making a big deal out of our own words and started placing our value on and investing our time in hearing and acting upon what other people are saying, their pleas, exhortations, celebrations, and questions- in short, if we started loving them. That’s when real living begins: when we realize that we’re no big deal and start seeking to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God.