slip-slidin-away sound bite
I climbed the narrow mountain path having a tall peak in my vision. It was the highest spot I could see and I desired to stand on that mighty pinnacle, taking in the entire valley’s view, knowing the air would be freshest there and the droning of everyday life would also quiet down. Planting my feet firmly with each step I ventured further up my path noticing so many new trees and bushes I had never seen before.
My legs tired as I ventured on and it seemed as though the trail brush became thicker as I ventured higher. Occasionally my feet would stumble upon a pit in the trail and I’d fall, bruising myself. Getting up each time, I’d dust myself off and replant my feet in areas less pitted, moving forward.
I could see my goal getting nearer but the path became a little more like rock and this wasn’t something I had walked upon before. I was determined to carry on but my confidence faltered as the climb got steeper. My steps felt slippery on the rock surface and in a moment of distraction I lost my footing and slid a good distance downward. Discouraged I wanted to quit and stay right there but still I looked up to see what the promised vision was. I felt tears start to run down my cheeks and I could only sense how far I still had to climb. Reaching for my pack to find a handkerchief I suddenly realized a view I hadn’t seen. Looking around and downward, I became aware I was high above other nearby hills and mountain peaks. Realizing how far I had already traveled, refreshment came and it was time to climb again.
I understood as I drew closer to my destination, no matter how slippery the surface, I was still on a rock and it wasn’t going anywhere. I could put an anchor in it and keep moving in an upward trajectory.
My hair used to be straight or so I thought. Turns out I just didn’t cut it right for most of my life! These days it curls up into any shape or form the wind blows it. Trying to tame it seemed futile so I let it go to the “wild side”. This seemed much cooler (meaning hip, people) when no one expected me to be mature, but there is a disconnect somewhere about getting older.
Let me espouse on this for a moment or two and please put in your two cents if I am way off base. The younger generation wants you to “act your age” but you of course are still young in your head, so isn’t that what you’re doing? The older generation wants you to “act your age” and again I ask, if you’re young at heart, isn’t that what you’re doing? Since you cannot seem to please either of these generations I say we should enjoy those that really “get you”!
Kids under 10 don’t yet have a concept that you are supposed to be someone other than yourself and this is a sweetness that exists nowhere else. Rolling your chunky body around in the mud while giggling like a buffoon seems pretty normal to them and it’s certainly liberating for anyone who does this. No expectations of dignity here, just total abandonment to joy and laughter.
Matthew 18:5 “And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me.”
“Out! Out! You Demons of Stupidity!” Saint Dogbert
This quote, though not as well known as literary masters, is still one worthy of deeper discussion. I wonder if there really are demons for stupidity? I meet a lot of people and some of them surprise me with the vacuous existence their mind seems to dwell in.
I was given advice a long time back regarding “interviewing your thoughts”. It was good advice and has helped me better focus my mind on ….”whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things.”
I am not sure if thinking about stupidity is anything of quality but my love for a fellow man at times makes me want to slap the “stupid demon” right out of him! At this moment I am still interviewing that thought.
Some people gotta learn the hardway
I guess I’m the kinda guy
That has to find out for myself
I had to learn the hardway, Father
I’m on my knees and I’m crying for help
Now I’ve been high and I’ve been low
I’ve been some places that you will not go
I never thought there would come the day
When I wished I never would’ve lived this way
But I’ve been searching for a long, long time
I thought the devil was a friend of mine
I turned my back on everything that was true
And wasted years that belong to you
It took so long for me to see
That I’m a victim of nature and me
Left to myself I realize
I am the maker of my own demise
But you accept me every time and again
And never mention just how selfish I’ve been
Why must it always take me so long to see
That I have fallen but you will forgive me?
The warning signs are like flares in the night
Still I proceed my greed is in spite of the fire
I know that’s bound to burn
Why is it that I always gotta learn…
The hardway, the hardway, I had to learn the hardway
The hardway, the hardway, I had to learn the hardway
(DC Talk Lyrics)
We all want progress, but if you’re on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive. C.S. Lewis
Admitting I made a mistake does not come easy and I cringe to waste time backtracking to the place I lost my way, but getting to the wrong place just isn’t an option.
“I need some rage!” A friend of ours recently said that in a conversation we were having about music and something in that chat struck me. She was talking about the music we use to get us rolling in the morning while we drink our coffee and lower the window for some chilled air, hoping for an awakening of our mind and bodies.
I had to go back and refresh myself on the word rage. The dictionary defined rage as, “violent anger, furious intensity, burning intensity or passion.” It dawned on me that rage literally was an expression of frustration. (Your heart is the wellspring of life – Pr 4:23) I understood the rage our friend spoke of. I have to live in a fallen world amongst fallen comrades who suffer the same afflictions as me. How could one not feel rage?
Disappointment, stress, pain and any other given pressure cooker item drives us into our responses. Today my thoughts focused on something interesting in the definition about rage. “Burning intensity and passion.” I recognized something deeper and special. I see my friend as a potential fire, ready to be lit. Once that rage is loosed to be expressed in “passion burning with intensity”, I get chills knowing the path will blaze brightly. I would imagine my friend as a literal “Firestarter” referencing an old Stephen King movie about a young girl who could telekinetically light fires in her “rage”.
With this thought in mind I would agree with my dear friend, she needs some “rage!”
“You have to live ready. If you have to stop to get ready, you are already too late. The opportunity will have gone.” Smith Wigglesworth
So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him.
It is no secret my life was less than perfect for many years and I wasted more time than I care to think of on my own selfish endeavors. I didn’t help anyone nor myself with how I spent my precious “60 seconds at a time” ticking away. When I realized that time was slipping away I felt sorry that I didn’t have the life I wanted.
I am sorry no longer and the life I have is all I could want and so much more.
My changing life is not my own work but that of my Maker. I was the marred pot but it was not my maker who hindered my beauty. I was marred because I tried to “make myself” without understanding the beautiful plan the potter had for me to begin with. He took my damaged clay and continues to remold me into something more beautiful and better for use.
How precious are the hands of my Father.
Bobby, who you will all come to know as “husband unit” or some other sickeningly affectionate name is a science fiction fan. What this has meant to my own life is time spent watching “B” grade movies and collecting most every “Star Trek” episode known to exist. Now mind you I don’t hate it but there were some episodes I simply wanted to take back from the “time thief”. (I’ve often felt those scripts were written by lesser talents not gifted with any vision!)
Of the more inventive Star Trek episodes were those dedicated to “the Borg”. I won’t bore you with details other than to say they were like parasitic creatures that consumed all creativity and individuality until you were conformed into some mindless zombie that only sought to destroy or make others like them called, “the collective”.
Today’s environment seems an awful like that. We seek to be like the stars on the magazine covers or the hip hop artists we emulate with all of our being until nothing original exists. On the other side of that thought is how when someone really is original they are either persecuted for their non-conforming speech or else they are hounded to be pigeon-holed into a box others can relate to and duplicated until they themselves are no longer original or relevant.
Society would have us believe “Resistance Is Futile”. We should buy what is sold, watch what is popular, listen to what is conforming and give up all dreams to be ourselves. When was the last time you watched one of those “entertainment” shows where they weren’t selling you someone else’s idea of who you should be like?
“Big wins are usually a collection of very small steps.”
Dr. Henry Cloud