October 5, 2014




There you are, stuck.
Maybe you’re stuck at work. One woman I’m acquainted with felt trapped in her work at a church-related organization. This organization did great work in the community for the sake of Christ, and was known far and wide for doing competent, compassionate work. Her stuckness came from the fact that the boss demanded more than she felt was justified. For example, she had no regular day off, not even Sundays, but was expected to be available for work seven days a week. The salary was low and had no benefits like health insurance, even though the job was a full-time. In spite of these unsavory aspects of the job, the woman didn’t know what other job to look for. So she remained, stuck and resentful.

Maybe you’re stuck in family life. For decades my grandfather was trapped in a series of disputes with two of his sisters. At one point they fought over who would inherit their father’s shaving brush. Of course the shaving brush wasn’t the real source of the conflict, since shaving brushes from the 1930s have little inherent value. Instead they fought over the shaving brush because they were stuck in a larger pattern of grinding conflict, and the brush was just a convenient object to renew their old fights.

Maybe you’re stuck in your relationship with God. Between you and the Holy One is the same old same old. The vitality between you and God has leached away; the freshness between the two of you has evaporated. Perhaps your image of God has become static rather than dynamic. Your prayers travel the same byways they’ve always traveled. The spiritual landscape is too familiar. Yet you don’t know what to do. You’re trapped.

Bible References

  • Exodus 14:10 - 10
  • Exodus 14:21 - 29