On second thought, I can relate to Bilbo Baggins. The quiet little man with an orderly house who was so private, it caused all the other hobbits in Hobbitville—or whatever—to start gossiping about how antisocial he was becoming. I’ve been accused of that.
And then suddenly, adventure was thrust upon him. Marked on his door without his permission. Which led to the abandonment of everything that made him feel safe, along with the added benefit of completely depleting his pantry. That would really irritate me if I’d spent three days collecting the coupons that put all that food there in the first place.
Personally, I really dislike the word adventure. In our house, it is considered the “A” word, and is banned from all polite conversation. So I felt really sorry, and a little uncomfortable, for poor Bilbo when he was first accused by his friends of being a selfish hermit, and then criticized by Gandalf’s gang for being a woose. (Can I say ‘woose’ in a blog? Is that even how you spell it?) That’s what you get for trying to be quiet and be yourself.
Interestingly, though, Baggins came around, chiefly because the overly-tall wizard had good instincts and believed there was a courageous hero buried deep in the heart of the short, non-dwarf.
The truth is, as the story illustrates, there is a yearning in all of us to fight a great battle—a noble, important battle for a life or death cause. But it’s dangerous. There’s no guarantee we’ll come out alive and return home to our chair and slippers. And, in my case, there’s no guarantee the journey would involve a big enough supply of chocolate.
As Bilbo pointed out to the hungry dwarves who trashed his kitchen, he had a home and was content to hang out there. The dwarves were nomadic and could understand neither his point of view nor the price he was being asked to pay to journey with them on a great adven . . . .well, you know, that word. But I understand. I have a home. I have a family. And when life marks a challenge on the door of my life, I’m usually pretty irritated about the interruption, too.
But the living God lives in me, the triune powerful Father, Son and Holy Spirit, three in One. And there are times when I am forced to believe what God tells me, even if it flies in the face of popular opinion or circumstances. In those situations, when my choices are to sink or swim, I have come out swinging with the Sword that the Spirit wields, clothed in the supernatural Armor of God. God always wins. And He lets me come along to watch Him do it.
It’ll always be that way. I hope that didn’t ruin the ending for you. It's just that I read it in the Book.
(Photo courtesy of erjkprunczyk's photostream at flickr.com)http://www.flickr.com/photos/24842486@N07/8271005722/