unreasonable people

I love to read.  Unfortunately, I have discovered that as I get older, I have trouble staying awake while reading.  I’m not really that old, and in reality, I have had this problem for at least 15 years…ok since college.  As a result, I have been reading the same book for 8 months. (it is 1200 pages, just for the record)

To combat my mild case of narcolepsy, I have gradually switched over to listening to audiobooks.  Not only do I have about a 30-minute commute to work and 30 minutes home when I can listen, but with iTunes, you can listen at 2x speed, making it possible for me to get around 2 hours of reading done a day.

One of the difficulties with listening to a book instead of reading one is that you can’t underline anything.  I was driving to work the other morning and I had to keep rewinding the book, then deciding I should pull over to send myself an email with what I wanted to “underline”.

It was a quote by George Bernard Shaw, a guy who had just about every profession during his lifetime but is perhaps best known as a playwright.  Here’s the quote:

“Reasonable people adapt themselves to the world. Unreasonable people attempt to adapt the world to themselves. All progress, therefore, depends on unreasonable people.

This hit me like a ton of bricks for a couple of reasons.

I wish people were more reasonable.  As someone who has to figure out how to make someone’s ideas a reality, I can easily fall into the trap of wishing they would come up with ideas that were more doable; or ideas that were easier to figure out; or ideas that wouldn’t require me to stay late to work.

If this quote is true, how can I embrace the unreasonable person’s ideas?  What if I want to be the one who helps change the world with my ideas?  How can I be more unreasonable? 

Most of the really amazing things I have been a part of have been unreasonable.  If I think back on it, much of the reason why I love to work in production can be traced back to some crazy unreasonable task:  an all-nighter, a stupid deadline, being completely outside of my comfort zone.  I wouldn’t trade any of those memories for anything, regardless of how unreasonable they seemed at the time.  In hindsight, they are the times that I felt like I learned the most and grew more than any other time in my life.

As technical artists, part of our job is to make the ideas of “unreasonable” people a reality; to adapt to the world around us.  The other part of it for me personally is to begin adapting to myself the parts of my world that I have been uniquely created to adapt.

For our churches to move forward; for us as individuals to move forward; we need to adapt to our world, and make the unreasonable happen, but how can we embrace the unreasonable so that our organization can move forward?

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