But You're Not Invited

I’ve been mesmerized by Field of Dreams since I first watched it in 1989.  I’ve chewed it through six ways from Sunday, made an analysis of it into a thesis and even bought a brown leather jacket because of Ray Kinsella. But most importantly it became my ground-floor for what living by faith and obedience looked like.  Even when it seems nuts to.   

One of it’s deepest “interacting with a higher, wiser power” moments came near the end where Shoeless Joe Jackson invites Terrance Mann… out.  Out into the mysterious cornfield to experience the great beyond.  He eagerly accepts the offer while Ray starts asking why HE doesn’t get to go.  I mean… it was HIS step of faith that created this WHOLE scenario in the first place.  Watch:


When Shoeless Joe tells Ray that he’s not invited into what he assumes is HIS dream, he begins asking… why.  It’s the same why that I remember my college roomate asking me about why I was engaged and he wasn’t.  It didn’t seem fair that I was invited to the party and he wasn’t.  It’s the same why that I know some friends ask about why they seemingly haven’t found their “ministry” while others seemingly have. We all seem to want to know… why.  And the answer is RARELY plain to see. All Shoeless Joe says is , “I think you’d better stay here Ray” with a gleam in his eye.  Then this happens:


It’s… perfect. Ray was not invited to go “out” because Shoeless Joe had something more… UNIQUELY RAY for him. I often think of God in this way.  He writes our stories and fleshes out our characters.  Sometimes He invites us into scenes, scenarios and situations.  Sometimes he doesn’t. Sometimes He shapes us instead.  Sometimes he tells us to mow down a cornfield to build a baseball field and demands immediate action.  Sometimes he makes us stare out at it all winter… and wait in faith.  ACTIVELY waiting in faith.

We have a saying around Freedom House that “Obedience IS success.”  We must remember that while asking why is an acceptable thing, we’re not always going to get the answers we want… IF we get an answer at all.  But if we trust in the God who says…

“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future'”

… then we need to be confident that obedience, faith and trust today will lead to a perfectly designed “UNIQUELY RAY moment” … only for you. ]]>

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