I’m traveling to meet up with missionaries from the Family Missions Company in the jungle part of Ecuador for the next week. I have other posts and will see if I can post while I’m traveling – if not, I’ll post when I get back. Have a great week!
The other day I stopped by the school here in Chontal and started talking with the principal. We started talking about something in the school, I really don’t remember what it was. But after a few minutes, I asked, “How is the new one doing?”. She of course has a belly the size of a beach ball. “Is the baby kicking yet?” She smiled and laughed, and that began a change in the whole conversation, as she had lots to say about the baby kicking, how many months, and all the rest. That’s what happens when you feel life kicking inside of you that is not you. You are excited and have lots to say about it, because it’s now the place where you literally get your kicks. Now, when you look at the work she has to do for the school, I think it’s a good bet to say that she gets her kicks from inside her, not from outside.
As a younger guy, I was like everyone else. I got my kicks from socializing, from drinking and sports and my career, from chasing women, from my hobbies. Then, one day, when I was seeing a dead end in front me in life, I noticed something move inside of me. Something inside of me kicked – it was a life inside of my heart and it wasn’t me! And then what happened? Well, then came the excitement and the wanting to talk a lot about it (and I did a lot of that), and from then on? There’s no more partying and getting drunk, no more chasing money and career ambition, no more chasing women and obsessing over the Red Sox and Patriots and Celtics.
Now, it’s more like I spend my life in service to others.
I get my kicks from the inside.
On Pentecost, I think that’s what happened to the disciples of Jesus. They had reached a dead end. The man they put all their hopes in had left them with only a promise. They had nothing left from their lives from before they did the most radical of things and set out to follow this man for 3 years. They experienced their own failure in abandoning him, and even though there was a mind-blowing resurrection, he had gone and left them again, this time for good. There was not going to be any parachute for them, there wasn’t going to be any career or financial or social fulfillment like they had hoped. They had reached a dead end, and were alone with each other and afraid.
And then there was a wind and something moved in the room, and at the same time, that’s when it happened to each of them. That’s when they each felt something kick inside of themselves for the first time. And of course, then came the excitement and the all the talking.
After that, they didn’t need social or political position, or the career success they thought might come along with the kingdom they hoped for. After that, they could spend themselves in service to others. They didn’t need to get their kicks from the outside.
They got their kicks from the inside.
When life is tough and it seems like you’re facing failure and a dead end, remember Pentecost. That’s the time to turn your attention from everyone and everything that’s outside, and wait and listen to what’s inside.
Listen for the kicks.
Because in the end, there’s one question that’s going to make all the difference in life.
Where do you get your kicks?
“The kingdom of God is not coming with signs to be observed; nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There!’; for behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” (Lk 17:20-21)