The Fiction of Ready
In the summer of 1974, Steven Spielberg sought to break cinematic ground by taking a camera, a crew, and a mechanical shark out to sea to shoot a film -something that had never been done before. He had the budget and the engineering team to make the film happen, but after many malfunctions with the shark, Spielberg began to sit in the reality that things weren’t going as he had planned.
As my trip draws near, the question I keep getting asked is “are you ready”, and I am quick to respond with my “as ready as I can be!”. The more I’m asked this though, the more I’ve thought about how I really have no idea if I am. I’ve done everything I need to in order to get to China, but at the end of the day, I am going to a land whose culture, history, and language I know next to nothing of. In a lot of ways I am Spielberg planning to make “Jaws”.
I’ve have come with a plan of action and gathered the materials I need, but I know that the most important resource is a willingness to adapt my plan when elements change. When Spielberg was faced with his star actor out of commission, he had the brilliant revelation that the most frightening demon is the one not seen. Most of the iconic scenes from the film were shot without the shark, and were produced as an alternative to his original vision.
I’m by no means hoping that everything goes awry on this trip, but I am trying my best to have an open-handed approach to planning. I know that creativity flourishes in restricted environments, and my life is a living testament to the truth that God’s plan is far greater than my own. I am looking forward to both the expected and unexpected on this trip, and my prayer that is that in both situations, I’ll continue to recognize God’s glory and promises.
As my team and I continue to get “ready” for our trip in 8 days, please pray for us and encourage us to view ready as coming with a plan and a willingness to adapt that plan when elements change.
Thank you for your love and support. -Andrew