Life Sentence

Have you ever heard someone say something that made you want to go do something radical? Have you ever felt dared even though the other person was just giving his/her casual opinion? That’s how I felt today while talking with another publishing colleague.

I was talking about making a career change. He brashly asked, “How long have you been at your current position?” I said, “Seven years.” He laughed and said, “Seven years. Yep, that’s a life sentence.”

This guy is a super perceiver. That’s what makes him just a great publisher. He also knows that I am in a family business, which creates a whole different set of issues. He basically said that I had spent too many years of my life there to leave now.

Honestly, if I worked any where else, I would not publicly share my process. But I doubt that my father will fire me for going public. And I don’t plan on leaving any time soon. It will take years for me to get to a position that I could teach Old Testament studies at a major university. But I am starting to see that may be my dream.

Walking the Holy Land last year did something to me. I know that people go on foreign trips and come back with ideas of grandeur. And they always think their case is different than what other pilgrims have experienced. I wonder if I could live with myself if I didn’t take this plunge?

Why the Old Testament? Well, it is largely misunderstood and contains great depths of spiritual treasure. It is the beginning of the great mystery that we call the Gospel. I always love the previews at the movies. And the Hebrew Scriptures are the previews.

Why teaching? Because I feel God’s pleasure when I do it.

I love many aspects of what I do now. But I know that this would be the opportunity of a lifetime. Honestly, part of me may want to prove my publishing colleague wrong. And part of me may want to just try something new. But I think a big part of me wants to explore the depths of what I began to discover while in Israel.

The best story is the world is God’s story. And the seeds of the narrative are found in the Hebrew Scriptures.

I certainly don’t want to live my life wondering “What if?” That in and of itself would be a life sentence.

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