9.2.22 | Unusual Certainty
“Clear thinking requires courage rather than intelligence.” Thomas Szasz
Today my wife aced her test for citizenship in the United States. She received a perfect score on her test with perfect timing too, considering this happened just before our cross-country trip. To be clear, that’s been six to seven years of a lot of headache, money and uncertainty.
God’s timing is mostly annoying, until it’s absolutely perfect. In the midst of our own plan while waiting impatiently for His, there’s an easy un-easiness and a tension that lingers. Traversing through the daily details with a God who is faithful, however, somehow brings with it a peace that I don’t have the vocabulary for — but for me it’s most like the ocean.
Here’s what I mean: On the surface there’s constant movement and ebbs and flows and ups and downs and untamed chaos at times. That’s the daily details. But the deeper we go, the more there’s an eerily beautiful stillness that make the waves seem like an illusion. Eventually, we have to come back to the surface, but the deep is always patiently awaiting our return. If we let Him, He will always bring us deep enough to learn a lesson and arise again, better than before.
That’s been our experience with God so far and this coming experience is shaping up to be no different. In 2021 we sold it all and bought an old 5th wheel because we had an idea and a plan and it seemed God was leading us that way. We started to renovate and ran into problem after problem. Half way through the year we found ourselves with an emptied out cardboard box on wheels with water damage and no idea what we were doing. Just then, my brother and his wife were shot killed by a family friend, and shortly after that, COVID smashed our little family with a 2 year old and a baby on the way. That’s one hell of a year.
There are moments in my life where I lean heavily on the wisdom of the Proverbs. These are the confident axioms of King Solomon. Those are my style. Forward looking. Shunning what’s bad and putting forward what’s good and working hard. Yet, I’ve learned that a Proverb without a Psalm is insufficient. The heightened wisdom that lacks the depth of a prayer life that rummages through the dark parts of our soul, leads to pride. Eugene Peterson said, “You’ve got to be able to cuss without cussing. That’s what the imprecatory Psalms do.” That’s the best I’ve ever heard. In 2021 my refuge from the swells and the wind was the deep. Because all of the sudden, what I thought I could control was out of control — until I went back to the one who created it all to remember that He was still in control. That’s what David did. Back to the plot. 2022 rolls around and the RV is done and we move in. We thought we knew what we wanted to do with it, but God had different plans and he made them clear about two months ago. So now as I write this, we’re off on an illogical adventure with a toddler and an infant. Why? Because as a family we’re building a ship that can function as a submarine. We are ridding ourselves of the unnecessary and focusing our attention on God and the people around us. Social media. Bye. Extra stuff that we don’t use. See ya. Unhelpful beliefs that are deemed as common sense, simply because it’s common. I won’t miss you. I’ve never been a fan of “common” anyway. I’m listening to 12 RULES FOR LIFE by Jordan Peterson again and he said something last week that I wrote down in blue ink at the top of my journal.
“To journey happily may be better than to arrive successfully.”
That sounds dumber than I wish it did to me. Why? Because nothing in my immediate visible environment tells me that this is true. Most everything in me wants to fight for significance and success and achievement and impact and scope. But the relentless pursuit of my own kingdom in the name of God is not what Jesus seemed to have taught with how He lived His life. He walked. He focused his attention on the people in front of Him. He was interruptible. He was full of joy.
People hated Jesus because He broke down generational cultural barriers. People hate Christians because their words and their lives don’t line up.
So here are a few of my axioms that I wrote down under that Peterson quote that morning:
Social Media is a net negative.
Success and progress is obedience and the fruit of the Spirit, not the pursuit of accumulation and adoration.
If we wish to pursue means, the idea must be followed through to the ultimateend. Then decide if it’s worth it. If it is, don’t look back.
The silence is a spiritual superfood.
Joy > Happiness
Generational Impact > Life Goals
Depth > Scope
Faith > Logic
Values > Goals
I am corruptible.
Yesterday is my competition.
Jesus is the standard.
The Bible is the Truth.
Clear thinking requires courage rather than intelligence, because clear thinking requires decision — and decision requires sacrifice.
So as for me and my family. We’ve made our choice.
Note: This post originally appeared on curtishunnicutt.com where I write and share regularly. I occasionally cross post to Medium. To get the latest content, you should subscribe to updates there.