There’s a great scene in Fight Club where Tyler Durden tries to convince the narrator to “just let go” and give up the control he thinks he has over his life. It is a powerful scene that encapsulates many of the themes of the film (and Chuck Palahniuk’s brilliant novel), but what always stood out the most for me is this: People spend much of their lives trying to control the things that happen in their life, when in reality we have little control. By shattering that illusion of control, Tyler leads the narrator on a path toward self-actualization.
Control is a difficult thing to relinquish. We all want to feel like we’re in control. We can take care of ourselves. We have our own plans. Put your best foot forward and you’ll get the job, the girl will like you. Work hard and you’ll be successful, respected. Eat right and exercise and you’ll be in good health. When that illusion of control is shattered like the windshield of Tyler’s car, it’s a traumatic experience, not necessarily as violent but always painful.
There have been times where I have felt close to God, as though I am walking lock-step in the path He has laid out for me. There are times when I feel as though I am all alone and my unheard prayers and cries are echoing off the bare walls of my bedroom. This is the latter. It’s easy in such times to ask “where is God” or “doesn’t He care?” Recently, however, it occurred to me that maybe times like these happen because he cares. Maybe it’s his way of saying “Jeremy, just let go.”
The more we rely on ourselves, the more we try to maintain control, the less we rely on God. Maybe sometimes God takes something from you to show you that it wasn’t what you need, that your heart and your mind are focused on the wrong thing. I have a hard time letting go. I have my own hopes, dreams, and desires. I have my own plan for my life. I have my own ideas of what it means to be successful and secure. And no matter how much time I spend trying to convince God that my plans are the best — and believe me, I have spent a lot of time doing exactly that — I know that God’s plan is likely very different. Read more…
Today is Saturday, which means that no one is reading this post. That begs the question, if I write a post directed at you, the reader, and there is no reader, does the post exist at all? (Spoiler: The answer is yes, according to the WordPress “My Posts” page).
As I’ve said before, since I’m unemployed every day is like a Saturday, with the exception of Sunday, with all of the churchy, Sabbathy stuff. So how does Jeremy – the unemployed but gifted writer who is as charming and handsome as he is broke and alone – spend his Saturdays? you ask. Allow me to share.
I woke up early and took my puppy to the dog park. I could do this because I wasn’t hung over, having quit drinking three years ago. Unfortunately, Saturday morning is when every mom in the neighborhood brings their kids to run around aimlessly, kick at each other, flail on the ground, and then eat some cookies and go home. It’s an activity called “soccer.” I had to circle the lot looking for a parking spot while soccer moms threatened to murder anyone who pulled into the spot in front of them when clearly their blinker indicated that it was their spot. Read more…
On Tuesday I got the news that is never wanted but should be expected when you work for a flaky social media website: I was being laid off. Bossman wasn’t having fun running an office anymore, so he decided to close it. He made up for it by offering us games, though.
“Guys, we’re closing the office, so I know you all are unhappy about losing your jobs, but I don’t want today to be a sad day. Who wants to play chess?”
Just like that, I became a statistic – part of the 8.3%. Just like that, my life changed, from my comfortable life working a dead-end job that I hated to a life of uncertainty, dread, and fear.