What drives you?
Working in Miles City MT lately I’m reminded of back in ’79 when I went there to work on re-siding a trailer house. I was 17 and was hired by a neighbor who worked for a mobile home dealer. There had been devastating hail storm that people in Miles City still talk about. So I rode up with him and another hand to work on repairing damaged siding for a day.
I had started chewing Skoal sometime before this and apparently had become quite addicted, though I didn’t realize yet—I would before this day was over. Sometime in the morning as we were working I reached into my back pocket, pulled out the round cardboard can with the tin lid and took a pinch of snoose. It was very dry, yuck. Apparently I had gotten used to having a fresh can everyday—it was only 35 cents a can at this time—so after a less than pleasurable chewing experience I decided I was going to toss this can, literally, I tossed it to the top of a very steep hill next to the trailer we were working on just to make sure I didn’t lower myself to putting any more of that dried out snooze in my mouth.
Sometime later that afternoon that dried out can of Skoal was calling my name louder and louder until I couldn’t stand it anymore, I had to have a chew and we apparently weren’t going to any stores any time soon. So when the boss, my neighbor, wasn’t looking I climbed to the top of the hill to retrieve my dried out Skoal. I couldn’t find it, worse, the boss walked around the corner of the house looking for me; “Dan, where are you?” “Aahh… up here.”
“What are you doing
up there!?” I was embarrassed to tell him I was having a nicky-fit so I just said, “Well, I was done with those windows so I just wanted to see what was up here.” He very gruffly said, “well you should have come and asked me what I wanted you to do next, we don’t have time to screw around!” All I could say was; “Sorry.”
I don’t know what was worse, the embarrassment of the boss thinking I was just screwing around or the fact that I still didn’t have any chewing tobacco. Later that evening when we finally got don
e and stopped for dinner on the way home I was able to run to the gas station next door to the cafe and buy a fresh can of chew.
Now, the reason I tell you this story is because it’s a good illustration, one many of you can relate to, of what it means to be driven. I had what would become an all-consuming passion to have a chew and it made me do certain things, it made me say certain things, on that day it certainly dominated my thoughts- “Need a chew, need a fresh chew, need any chew, where’s my chew? Can we stop so I can buy some chew? —Aaahh, finally some chew.”
Years later, and unfortunately after a few other life and thought controlling addictions, another passion would consume me. The feeling of love and power, the feeling of being alive, and even important, to the one who mattered most, the God of the universe. It was a feeling that would consume me and put a fire in me that would move me and drive me to do certain things, to say certain things, it would dominate my thoughts and pervade every aspect of my life.
In fact, I used to fear—because I knew the ways of an addict—that I would soon tire of the feeling or that it would fade. Or even realize that it wasn’t real and move on seeking another, more exciting thrill as the joy of the one I was currently pursuing waned or wore me down.
It didn’t. I have sometimes lost sight of the significance of who I am in him, the feelings of passion and zeal have come and gone, not to be replaced with something better, but only with fears and anxieties, feelings of fear and unworthiness, loneliness and frustration. But I have come to see that it is only when I believe the lies of the enemy, succumb to the deceits of the religious or the lusts of the flesh that the fire fades.
We need to continually remind ourselves who we are, who our God is and realize that we have no higher purpose and that our calling is irrevocable no matter what other people or situations may tell us. So the questions remain: “What am I appointed to do?” and “What drives me?”
13 It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak, 14 because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself. 15 All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God. 2 Cor 4
What are you called to do? Do it and do it boldly, you might not get another chance, each day passes away with the sunset. People come and go, kids grow up, neighbors move away, loved ones die, and one day, sooner than you realize, time has slipped away and you are yesterday’s news. And when you read that old story, the story of your life, will it be full of regret, or will you look back and say, wow, I had no idea just that simple act of obedience would have such an impact!
All I’m saying is- Don’t miss your call because you are up on the hill looking for your snoose can.