It was Wednesday night at 10 pm. I had done my blog post on Monday as has been my pattern since February 1st. I had done it all on my phone. The technology of how the phone responded to the WordPress app was challenging, but after hours of wrestling, I was able to press “post” and lay it down to turn to other projects.

But Wednesday night I was looking at my Facebook account and realized Monday’s “post” was not there. I checked my WordPress account, and it was not there either. How many times had I been told: ‘Saved one minute ago’ in the process? Yet there was no draft of that post, no page where it still existed. But somehow after hours of time, the post which had one time been there was totally gone.

I didn’t laugh, I moaned.

“Really?” was my frustrated response.

Seriously. And that was when technology got the better of me. I was so disappointed at all the time spent and, what felt like, wasted time. I know – no such thing, for all things have purpose and plan! But still it “felt” wasted. I dove off the high ledge into the black pool of self-pity and swam around a while, which did not make me easy to live with.

Karen calmly mentioned that perhaps I could be thankful I am discovering this while still here! That was true, but I was still enjoying the dark waters and unwilling to get out.

It was not time to solve this what felt like a crisis. So, instead, I simply went to bed. But then there was the thought – “God, how are you using this in me?”

The next day and days following, I realized just how much God uses technology, and the malfunction of it, to challenge my life. He allows stuff that I would wish he would just solve, so that I can be more in touch with Him and lean more on Him.

What if instead of diving into the familiar pool of despond, I simply turned to the “Father of Heavenly Lights” and asked for understanding, for wisdom, for the lesson?

What if I cancelled my entrance pass to the diving platform above the “black pool of self-pity,” and instead just looked up, and stayed in the waters of hope, of life, of love, and of peace provided by the magnificence provision of Jesus?

What if I listened to this God instead of to the thoughts that swirl up like grasping fingers from the depths of my own doubts, taunting me, speaking with the language of “always” and “never,” detailing out all future days based upon one experience?

What if I believed the God who says that He will use “all things for my good,” (Romans 8;28) and really believed that “all means all,” not excluding the present “thing” that has presented itself before me?

What if every experience now and when I am in Spain and Ireland will be an opportunity for this God to change me, and grow me, and challenge me?

What if?

I found out this technology glitch, which I have still not solved, was not the end of the world. No one said, “Hey, why no post this week?” It was an experience now, which, as Karen said, let’s me learn to decipher what glitches may occur and how to overcome them, or at least “live with them.” God remained God and I remained me. Good stuff.

So, hat’s off to you, technology. You are yet an instrument in the hands of my Maker to expose my own need for growth and life. This I receive!


About Camino Way 2016 Shimer

On August 22, 1981 I married this wonderful woman, Karen, who has consistently blessed and changed my life and days. We are still in love, all the more with the years. We have four daughters, two sons by marriage, and three delightful, wonderful grandchildren. So, that makes me a husband, father, and grandfather all in those sentences. But mostly just a guy who loves my family. Today Karen and I planted beautiful plants in numerous pots. She had come home with the plants and that experience reminded me how much I enjoy simple things and simple pleasures -- like digging in dirt to plant a flower, like sunlight through glass on a spring day, like clean windows -- just washed ours today -- like a melody that won't escape from my heart. I've been a local church pastor for 30 years as of this June, a number that staggers me for I feel about that age on the inside, but clearly that's not the case. Back in 1988 I graduated from Asbury Theological Seminary with an Mdiv-- a time of schooling that has been a foundation for years of ministry. But it is mostly in the building upon that foundation, that has most changed my life. I love people, love seeing Jesus work in people's lives. One of my favorite joys is to pray with someone through some horrible place of memory and see Jesus walk right into their memory world, and turn on the lights in a way that sets their soul free and brings healing. There's nothing like this privilege and I have been there to watch it happen more times than I can count. Between 4 and 7 the associate pastor of my family's congregation sexually abused me, first grooming me, then repeatedly violating my young self. This marked my life. It changed my bearings. It ripped at my faith. It wounded my image of what it meant to be a little boy, and later a man. It has been a point from which I have been in the process of healing for many years now. I'm a survivor, but more than that, I am one who lives beyond what was done. For in the middle of all that stuff, Jesus was calling me, speaking to me, bidding me to follow him to bring change to people's lives within the realm of the very office that was used to harm me. Only Jesus can make light from darkness, hope from despair, and healing from brokenness. I love Jesus. He really is alive, no matter what others may believe. And his life, his presence, his words into my world, his healing power have continued to be the foundation point of what it means to experience life to the fullest. I love writing. I don't really know why on that score for really writing has never been a central tool in my world, nor has it come easily. But I love seeing how words released heal. And I love the way words can connect me to other people's worlds. So, that's why I started blogging. It began because I was planning to blog on a weekly basis when I went to walk the Camino de Santiago last fall. And in order to be able to blog while walking, I knew I had to begin to practice blogging before I was in another country. A friend told me that. Friends are good to help us find ways to live more authentically into our daily lives! So, I started. But what I have discovered is there is something powerful about sharing the story of life with others. So, I have continued. And I love the connections being built through those words. In 2011 I experienced my first seminar in Simply the Story, a bible story telling method that involves those listening in discussion and I decided then -- "this is what I plan to do when I retire." But really-- "why wait until then?" -- so I use this method while I continue pastoring. It sets people free and allows the Word to take root in ways that preaching never has. So again and again I am practicing asking questions and that is good practice for me, because I am frequently better at "telling" than "asking." This has been such a freeing gift. I love training others in this skill. So, a storyteller would certainly be true of me too. Years ago I discovered my mission in life is "the joyful transformation of people's lives through the person of Jesus Christ." And that continues to be where I find my home base, in joy. Where there is joy, I find, there is Jesus, and there is the possibility of transformation. Of course Jesus is in places where there is no joy as well, and once He is there, the place kind of changes because of Him. I love that.
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1 Response to Technology

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