If you debate for a second when God has spoken, it is all up. Never begin to say—‘Well, I wonder if He did speak?’ Be reckless immediately, fling it all out on Him. You do not know when His voice will come, but whenever the realization of God comes in the faintest way imaginable, recklessly abandon. It is only by abandon that you recognize Him. You will only realize His voice more clearly by recklessness. (Oswald Chambers, My Utmost For His Highest, June 8th)I can't say I heard God speak giving me a retirement date. For me it always seems to come to the point of saying to God, "I haven't heard from you and I really want to do Your will and please you. This is what I'm hoping/planning to do. If it's not what you want, please let me know."
For me it was more a matter of three things:
- age; in the middle of the range at 67
- dates; after Easter with the summer then available for posting, interviewing and a move for a new priest
- circumstances; my mother, who lived with my sister for fifteen years, always said she'd move into a senior's home before she needed extra care. Advancing years and a couple of strokes took her ability to choose that away so when the move had to happen it was very difficult for her and my sister. There's a lesson in that, I thought; you've got to move before you think you have to because too-late sneaks up on you.
How reckless is retirement? I suppose one could argue that it's reckless to retire before one has to. It's reckless to abandon a well paid job and to join the ranks of the fixed income pensioners when one doesn't have to, especially when the Canadian Anglican pension fund has had some solvency issues. But it doesn't feel reckless. It's too comfortable for reckless. If it is reckless, it's reckless in slo-mo.
Which brings me to…
Small, Daily and UnglamorousOn their Facebook page Slow Church posted:
Slow Church hopes to affirm the small, the daily, and the unglamorous. It all matters.Reckless retirement in slo-mo is about small, daily and unglamorous, too. I like it. Especially in the light of some things I've been reading in my daily offices lately.
Not one word of all the good promises that the Lord had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass. Joshua 21.45Not one word. And,
So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God. Luke 12.21Retirement, I find, has not a whole lot of opportunity for laying up any treasure for myself so far. I'm hoping small, daily and unglamorous in slo-mo will be rich toward God.