Everyone has a pop culture blindspot.
Whether it’s for lack of time or lack of funds or just a general lack of interest we all have those movies or tv shows or books that it seems like everyone in the world has experienced except for us.
This may come as a shock to you, but it’s true – I, a 29-year-old red blooded movie-loving male, have never seen a 007 movie.
I don’t really know how it happened. Maybe watching wrestling satisfied all my testosterone needs in pop culture. I don’t have any moral objection to the Bond series.
If someone were able to make a case for wanting to show me one of the movies I think I would sit down and watch one. But there’s no way I’m going to ever dive through the entire Bond history.
At this point in my life I know I’ll probably just never start watching a James Bond movie on my own. I’ve come to the realization that – even with hopefully many more happy and healthy years in front of me – I just can’t experience everything this world has to offer.
With the amount of quality entertainment in the landscape today and the incredible ease of access we have to it, at a certain point you just have to resign that there are some pop culture phenomena you’re never going to get around to experiencing.
I’m ok with never watching a James Bond movie. But there are some things that I’m not ok with never doing.
Life really is too short to not jump into the things you do want to experience, to put them off because you feel obligated to do something else first.
I’ve really been feeling that the past few months. To recap, my wife and I moved to Atlanta a year ago to chase some dreams and start our married life in a new city. To do so I had to leave my job as a youth minister.
In fact Kate and I both ended up leaving ministry altogether for a season. We both believed it best to not get started with a ministry if we weren’t going to be able to pour ourselves fully into it. We knew we would not be able do this as we moved to a new city, planned a wedding, and started at a new school and new jobs. We thought maybe once Kate graduated we could settle down somewhere and I could begin to explore full time ministry again.
So in the interim I found a job with a non-profit whose ideals I really identified with. My hope was that I could use my skills as a writer and speaker to have an impact for God in a job that didn’t have to be inside the walls of a church.
After 10 months I have nothing bad at all to say about this job. It was a great opportunity with people I enjoyed working for and a mission I could get behind. I learned a lot, was paid well, and am proud to say I worked there.
But the longer Kate and I stayed away from ministry the more we kept hearing the call to come back.
Every day my mind drifted back to the desires of my heart to serve the kingdom of God through youth ministry. I didn’t want to go the rest of my life never giving youth ministry another chance.
As Kate and I talked and prayed we came to the decision that life is too short to not chase those desires, to not at least try to do what you believe God put you on earth to do. We decided together to not worry about the future but to chase the calling of our hearts in the present.
It’s scary. I’m 7 years older than when I started my last job as a youth pastor. 7 years farther away in life and shared experience from this generation. My teaching skills are rusty after 2 years off. I worry if I’ll be able to connect with, much less keep up with, a new crop of teenagers.
But I’ll never get another chance at this life. I’ll never get this opportunity in this season again. It’s too important to me to never take this leap of faith just because it’s scary. I don’t want to wonder what might have been had I followed God. I’d rather risk it and see what happens.
Because at this point in my life I’m ok with never seeing a James Bond movie. What I’m not ok with is never taking a chance with the skills I believe God gave me to pour back into students.
Life is too short to keep waiting on the perfect time to take a leap. Life is too short to not do what you feel called to do when you have an opporunity to do it.
Kate and I don’t know what our lives will look like a year or 2 or 3 from now. We want so badly to be able to plan out our lives that far in advance.
But we believe following God sometimes means stepping out in faith even when you don’t know all the details of the plan. It means living each day as if it were your last and doing something you truly believe in with your career in the present in case you don’t get that opportunity again in the future.
It means deciding which things in life you’re not ok with saying “I’ll never” to and doing everything in your power to accomplish them.
Do you have a pop culture blindspot? What’s something on your heart you’re not ok saying “I’ll never” to?