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When Everything is Irrelevant August 14, 2011

Posted by thesociallyawkwardchristian in Christianity.
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A couple of weeks ago, I got the opportunity to go to a seminar led by two of my youth ministry heroes: Doug Fields and Duffy Robbins. The seminar was on speaking to teenagers. As I listened and learned about how to better communicate with the kids in my youth group, a thought crossed my mind.

“This is completely irrelevant.”

The teaching wasn’t irrelevant, of course. I felt that as just a guy who works at a feed store, with hopes of being in vocational ministry one day but that goal nowhere in sight, the teaching was irrelevant to me, personally. I don’t get to preach to teenagers on a regular basis, only a couple time a year, so I found myself thinking that this seminar couldn’t really help me that much, because come Monday morning, when everyone else at the seminar would start working on their next messages, I would be loading horse feed into the back of some old redneck’s truck.

To make matters worse, the night before the seminar I had a very emotional conversation with a loved one, that made me think pursuing God-honoring relationships and marriage could be irrelevant.

The problem with irrelevance is that it leads to apathy. Apathy is a dreamkiller. Dreams just can’t survive if you don’t care enough to nurture then. So when everything seems irrelevant, and we start to become apathetic, how do we fight against it? It’s hard to fight something when you’ve lost the will to fight. Frankly, there are no easy answers. It’s gonna be hard. Fights always are. Especially when you don’t feel like fighting. My best advice is nothing extraordinary. It’s simply this: do what Christ-followers are supposed to do. Worship. Read the Scriptures (The Psalms are particularly helpful when you feel like you are at the end of your rope). And especially…give.

After my emotional rollercoaster of a weekend, I went to my church’s young adults service which we hold on Monday nights. I left about ten minutes early so I could pick up some things from the Dollar Store and get to bed for an early day at work the next morning. As I got in the check out line, I quickly became annoyed when the lady in front of me had one of those prepaid credit cards that wasn’t working. “It’s supposed to have $50 on it,” she kept saying. Finally, she said, “I guess I’ll have to do without.” It’s at that moment when I said to myself (more likely, the Holy Spirit said to me), “Are you really gonna let her walk out of here for $8.93?” So I paid for her items. As the tears filled her eyes and she unexpectedly hugged me, I realized that some things are very relevant. Because of my lousy feed store job, I was able to pay for her milk, bread, etc., without even giving it a second thought. It wasn’t much at all to me. The look in her eyes said it was a lot more to her.

I didn’t change the world. It only cost me less than nine bucks. But, it reminded me that even though I’m not where I want to be, I can still be relevant where I am. Because everything is relevant.

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