The last few months I have noticed something about our society: people are so unoriginal! There is nothing new under the sun so I am not talking about that kind of unoriginality.
Let me explain.
I am sure, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I have been asked the same set of questions at least 300 times the last few months. No kidding. It goes like this:
"How is the wedding planning going?"
"Are you excited?"
Now, tell me, what are the answers to those questions? The majority of the people who asked the first question were not inquiring with a desire to help and usually just wanted an avenue to share their wedding planning advice. I certainly did not mind their input, but it just got tiring facing it day after day.
The second question is even more comical. It poses two problems for me-1. I am mostly an introvert. When I am excited I do not jump up and down with glee like some might. I felt like some doubted my excitement to marry Joel and took it as a concern they needed to address. 2. The simple and yet truthful answer, "yes," seems too boring. Therefore, I always wanted to figure out what else they wanted to know about my excitement or explain why my excitement looks like this: :-) instead of this :-D.
"Did you get the Swine Flu?"
"How is married life treating you?"
"Do you still love him?"
I guess the Swine Flu was a big scare while we were gone to Mexico on our honeymoon. I have one thing to say about that: the American Media must have been bored. The second question, wow, I am not sure what to even say. Joel and I have decided to never ask a newly married person that question.
First, "married life" is an inanimate idea which cannot do anything to us that we do not allow it to do. Again, the simple and yet truthful answer, "good," seems too boring for me. I have tried to come up with some good responses like, "God is teaching me a lot," "It's been fun," etc., but those are unoriginal answers to unoriginal questions and that is worse than asking unoriginal questions! ::Sigh:: There is no way to win here!
The last question of wanting to know if I still love him is just, well, strange. What if I said "no"? What would people do? My flesh wants to answer harshly with, "What kind of a dumb question is that? Of course I still love him!" My piety wants to answer, "I vowed to love him so I never will not love him. Love is not a feeling anyway." I just smile and give them the simple and yet truthful answer, "Yes, of course I still love him."
This is not the first time (nor will it be the last... pregnancy is worse I bet!) I have experienced people's lack of originality in question-asking. I guess, this time, it just struck me different as I learn and grow in how I want to relate to people. I am not, in any way, doubting the sincerity of the people who asked me unoriginal questions. I just want to know the heart. I want people to know I care about their feelings, emotions and spiritual well-being. I want to encourage them to follow Christ through the situations in their lives.
There IS one question, though, that I will NEVER get tired of being asked and will continue to ask, "What is God teaching you?" That question can be edited to fit any situation and needs to be asked more than it is.
Jesus was the master of asking the right question at the right time. I am sure he participated in humanly necessary questions like, "How are you? Where is the bathroom? Where is Mary?" Or maybe not, since he knew the answer already... The questions Jesus asked were meant for the hearers and aimed right at the core of their being.
As I got weary of people asking me these questions I thought, "What questions would Jesus ask me at this time in my life? What questions are there in Scripture that I need to asnwer?"