In which I get mad, mention "soul distinction", and divide the whole world into just two groups.
Boys and girls, this is a short tale about the time a generation forgot...
they forgot what they are to be about. And I mean the Christian kids. The awkward, lovingly sheltered, semi-socialized goofs I so happily grew up with, in all the churches I rotated through as a child/teenager. At large, something definitely morphed. Almost all over the place.
I got upset.
Wha...what happened, guys? When did we decide that our social rankings and entertainment and material gratification were what we were most important?! When did we say that we were simply happy to be forgiven and then not live in utter gratitude of that forgiveness? (when I say I get upset, this means I got really mad in private and huffily wrote out my feelings in a notebook a midnight. I don't think I could yell at my friends if they were trying to kill me.)
When I say "at large" I mean there still those who can be
found, scattered among all the others, who still want to hold tight to a
faith, God, something deeper. Even these are hard to spot,
because they have the immense difficulty of holding on to something
everyone else seems to take so lightly.
Rewind only six or seven years. We looked different. We stuck out. A lot. Like sore thumbs. We were pretty proud of it, too. Our speech, our actions, our dress, how we spent our free time.We were the good kids, and we were special.
Okay, this attitude really had it's flaws. We stuck up our noses a little to much. Anything our parents said was worldly, we took to the next step, snubbing it, seeing anything mom and dad said was bad, as absolute filth.(Not to say their isn't filth to be snubbed in this world. Golly this subject is hard to balance.)
I'm gonna make somebody mad...but to a degree, I think we stuck our noses so high in the air because that worldliness appealed to all of us on some level or another. We knew it was bad, we knew we would get in trouble if we tried it. But somewhere in those brains of ours, I know things appealed to us. "Ok it's vain but I sure wouldn't mind trying to be prettier. It's selfish, but it would be nice to be rich. It's lazy, but some of those video games look pretty fun."
How could I have the audacity to make a blanket statement: that all super conservative kids secretly, almost subconsciously want to be less conservative? Because we are fallen human beings, naturally selfish and all bent towards desire and gratification.
We're sinners. It's kinda what we do.
One of my favorite quotes ever? "Be in the world and not of it."
While I am guilty of the very human habit of trying to equate material things with a non-material longing, I count myself as one of those who watched as more than a few of my friends kinda...melted...into the self gratifying masses of the world. It was slow, they still seem to have "morals" but somewhere in there, the core attitude/focus changed. You could tell, not necessarily by how they dressed or looked, but definitely by how they acted and what they wanted to talk about.
If I were to be in a crowded room, full of people, at first glance, I would look no different. Jeans, t-shirt. The styles of this world have stuck to me. I don't look like I'm from the 1800s. I don't act like it. I even wear converse sneakers and makeup. *gasp*
But, if someone bothers to talk to me, I want them, Lord willing, to see this: I look like you and talk like you, but I am not all caught up in this material world that I am a part of. There should be spirit and a soul that leaks even into my surface level conversations, that shines through the cracks of my otherwise "normal" personae.
Those who struggle hold on to a real faith, to really make it their own, may change from their parents standards somewhat. But they are trying to get doctrines grounded and find a purpose, not trying to get what will make them supposedly happy, or satisfied.
On one of my frequent "notebook episodes", I scribbled out a perspective I now realize have almost subconsciously developed when I look at every single person I see:
"Two groups: the ones who are ultimately absorbed with self, and how self does in life. Self wants love, acceptance, attention, they want to "live": that must mean those vacations, the whimsical BBQs and lake parties, complete with cold beverages, games, and cute clothes. Its movies, shows, entertainment. Playing with emotions and hormones. It turns to trends, some of which are pretty cool. But it's basic, almost animal desire for physical and sensual gratification on one level or another. Then there are those of us who will separate what's a blessing to be enjoyed and what is trash that shouldn't be obsessed over. We struggle to see how other people can be so easily absorbed and satisfied with stuff that turns to dust in the end, pleasures that really do fade, and social standings that are as empty as a balloon. Its not just that we snub that level of shallowness, we don't understand how others can be so utterly obsessed with pointless things. We just don't get it."
So please, think...are you distinct anymore? Has your focus changed? What is your purpose?
Me? I'm still struggling with finding my exact identity and faith in God. Those questions are still bothering me, big time. But I know I don't want my identity in this material world, in physical desires. There is something more. This distinction will show. And it's not necessarily an in your face kind of distinction. It bleeds, like ink, through the paper of your soul.
She was gonna pace herself and just do two articles a week.
And then she got lazy one day and decided she couldn't make time to do what she loved...write. And the next day, and the day after that, and the week after that, she was still too "busy".
Busy: Verb. That state in which someone decides they would much rather use their free time to read books, browse the Internet, read other blogs, and do other, slightly less taxing pastimes than writing. Yeah. Busy)
Meet yours truly, the Royal Queen of procrastination.
The every day, tired girly who smells like pizza...you're welcome?
Apologies for the absence, and anyone who might have seen the funky chalkboard header I was experimenting with. *Shudders*. Not sure what I was thinking there.
Like with anything, anything, musician, athlete, dancer, photographer, writer...we've got to keep up with what we do.
Just do it. (Thanks Nike)
Don't let the muscle get stiff. Not if it's something your passionate about and really want to pursue. It's like our brains are all fired up to be the greatest at what we absolutely love...andour resolve is this pathetic little balloon that all to easily just kinda...deflates. With lots of whining and lame excuses.
If you really love what it is you are trying to improve on or learn more about, forcing yourself to actually do it will be hard for like, the first 3 minutes. I promise.
"Oh, yeah, I love playing music. Writing unlocks the creative genius dancing around in there. Man, this is fun. I should do this all the time and just live in creative bliss!"
Ever think about how much a human being is actually capable of accomplishing in one days time?
A normal human being like you and me. We have, what, about 14 to 16 waking hours in a day?
I believe God created us with a lot more potential for productivity and passion, than the vast majority of us ever bother to unlock.
If you were the most productive version of yourself, how do you see your life going? What would you be doing differently if you were not hindered by procrastination and laziness(like me)?
In which are musings to change the way we think of day.
Day. A strange, quirky, fascinating journey.
Think about it.
In the morning, it's kind of all slow and foggy and still a little dark. Things are cool and fresh and smell like coffee shops and sound like birds just starting to chirp. We listen to different music than we do at night. Your mood in the morning? It's not going to happen at any other time of the day.
But by the time night comes around, our senses are fully alive. We are ready to wrap up a day that was a roller coaster of life and food and conversations. It was full of boring moments. Sad moments. Hysterical laughter. Impatience. Frustration.
We may have just interacted with a surprisingly large amount of people as this day went on. We probably impacted even more people than we will ever know.
So all the sudden, only hours later, we are in a completely different world than we were in hours before. And in a few hours, it will start all over again. Some days are a long journey, a day that was an eon...by nightfall, morning really did feel like it was years ago.
Sometimes we may feel like it gets a little old. Like days need to be longer, because we have to make breakfast and get up and take another shower and brush our teeth again, even though we just did it yesterday and a thousand yesterdays before that.
But that's just it. We have taken these thousands of journeys, from dewy, clean mornings to emotional, volatile night time. Over and over. Its like our life is splintered up into countless little lives, that pass in a brief 24 hour period.
So think of that next time you open your curtains in the morning, or end your night with weary eyes. Think of all the billions of things you'll do, just in that day, or all the millions of emotions you traveled though, as your eyelids droop with fatigue. Think of how a day is like a little lifetime. You are born into the morning, your eyes opening, blinking at the light. You stretch. You will grow, however slowly. You will be hurt. You will be loved. You will discover. You will want to give up on something. You grow weary. You die into the night. But you will try your life all over again the next day.
Think of that. Think of the beauty in that. The wonder and strangeness. Change your perspective.