Idealism and life don’t mesh very well. Not because you can’t have a great life, but because that target of greatness, when idealized or idolized, turns you into the greyhound chasing the rabbit around the track.
I’ve heard if a dog ever catches the rabbit they won’t race again because apparently the psychological ramifications of such an experience are insurmountable–dog days, right?
This makes me wonder, though, how many pastors, professionals, parents, and other p-words are on their fourth lap around the track thinking the next season or service or strategy or selfie is FINALLY going to satisfy.
Pretty much every one of our endeavors has a rabbit of its own.
For tennis players the ultimate rabbit is Wimbledon. Kids imagine diving across the All England sod and hitting a winning volley before raising the cup overhead and winking at the queen.
Boris Becker did that. I don’t know about the winking part, but the other stuff. Yet with two Wimbledon championships to his name, he was popping pills, throwing whiskey down into his belly, and contemplating how he would kill himself.
That’s why I said, God forbid you catch the rabbit and find out it’s a stupid stuffed animal that was never meant to fulfill you.
See, the target always changes.
The rabbit is often an ideal in our minds.
And what ends up happening–that is, what happened to me–is your vision of the perfect ministry (or life) becomes the enemy of your present one. What you’ve imagined in your mind can never measure up to reality.
Life has a way about sorting through our bogus visions and plans. If you’re chasing rabbits, hit the brakes and ask, “What if I catch it?”
- What if my kids stay healthy and get into the best college? So what?
- What if my church grows past 200, 400, 4000….so what? What then?
- What if my business hits the $1 million mark? Woohoo! More taxes. Then what?
- What if my boss recognizes my brilliance and gives me the promotion? What’s next?
You get the rabbit. Then what?
It’s a question worth asking. Maybe there’s a better goal, vision, or target. Maybe not. You may be exactly on the path you need to be on. But it’s still healthy to turn a few rocks over every now and then.