Friday, January 4, 2013

Getting Wrecked: Part II

Greetings from the fourth floor of the Hampton Inn and Suites overlooking the Reedy River in Greenville. My husband gave me a three-day stay here so I could write/pray/play or whatever I needed to do to welcome the New Year.

I felt a great deal of pressure the first day to use the time well and produce some spectacular product of divine inspiration, which has yet to take form. 

But today, as I released the striving and watched the sunrise, the word SPLENDOR swelled in my spirit: Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples . . . Splendor and majesty are before him. —Psalm 96.

Amen and Amen!

I am pleased to introduce someone who puts these words into action: Jeff Goins, blogger, storyteller, and stirrer of visions. He is the author of Wrecked, a book he describes as “a guide to growing up and learning to live in the tension between the next adventure and our daily commitments.”

Taking the call to action from his book to heart, Jeff is co-leading a mission trip in February to Guatemala, a country near and dear to my own heart, in February.  

Following is a continuation of an interview which you can see in the previous post. 

Jeff, how can people who are willing to do the hard things, get messy, and move into someone else’s pain, be at peace with their own comforts, lazy afternoons in the pool, or delights in beauty? Is there a place, a way of looking at the pain and still seeing beauty? 

Great question. I wish I could answer it. :) Most of us want to find a way to balance everything — our families, jobs, passions, etc. — but living a wrecked life isn't about balance. It's about managing tension.

Life is full of tension, warring desires and conflicts that pull at us from every angle. Sometimes, when both are good (like rest and action, for example), the answer is to live somewhere in the middle. To embrace the tension.Balance is about control. Tension is about faith. 

Can you care deeply about the pain of the world and still enjoy a day off? Of course. Should you? Probably. Do you need to have the exact ratio figured out? Not at all. Learn to live in the tension. The place to not live is on one extreme or the other; that doesn't seem very healthy or sustainable. 

Although assuaged by your quote from C.S. Lewis about not pursuing the thrill of an experience—letting it go and moving “through that period of death into the quieter interest and happiness that follow," I wonder if someone who has been undone at some time in their life by another’s pain, can ever let go of the longing, the incessant nagging to do more?

You're right, Marcia. You can't. It stays with you, haunts you. And that's what it means to be wrecked — you can't go back to who you were. 
The trick is to keep going, to let those experiences inform and shape your future without trying to relive them. 

You have had much experience and contact with missions, yet you are better known in cyberworld for your writing/social media expertise. Do you feel that writing a book like Wrecked is an unexpected departure for your followers?

I thought it might be, but honestly, few people struggled with it. This underscores a belief that I've held for awhile: we follow writers not just for their genres and topics, but for their voices and worldviews. That seems to be true in my case. 

Has having a child affected how you think about a wrecking experience?

Absolutely. I alluded to this at the end of the book, but since the birth of our son, those ideas of commitment and doing the hard thing have only been underscored.
Getting wrecked is about stepping into uncomfortable situations and realizing life is not about you. So far, parenthood has been the best way to learn this lesson for me.


Thank you, Jeff, and thank you friends for stopping here. May you dare to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God and see what He will do.



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