The Whistler's Dream

Everybody needs a dream...
Mine is to go to Oklahoma and play whistles for The Pioneer Woman. (Having been invited, not in a "creepy stalker" kind of way, for the record.) Heck, I'd play in a pup tent in the backyard for the joy of the cows and critters. What can I say? I'm a fan.
Everybody needs a dream...

Random Fluffy Foto!

Random Fluffy Foto!
Writing in bed, and Beka editing by ear. Really. The ear typed some letters. Really.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

I'm tired of incivility (or was that rude of me to say?)

I'm weary of the web. I'm weary of rudeness. I'm weary of getting a headache every time someone rolls down our street with a subwoofer that is turning their brain to mush.

And you're weary of this post. Already. :-D

Today, I purchased a Rachael Ray garbage bowl. I like Rachel Ray - she's cute, funny, perky and smiles in a perfect triangle. Makes me laugh. Did you know there's a blog totally devoted to ripping on Rachael Ray? They refer to her as "Raytard" (so let's use an offensive term to be more offensive, eh?) and drone on about how much they hate her and everything about her.

1) Somebody (a lot of bodies) have WAAAY too much time on their hands
2) Does all this energy expended actually DO anything? No.

But the blessing and the curse of the Internet is that it allows anybody anyplace to spout off anything that comes into their little brains. That can be good - in the hands of writers like StoryGirl, Jenelle, Ruth, and others who you can find in links on the right of this page, there is encouragement, humor and enough interesting stuff to keep you reading for weeks.

But it can also be bad. Anyone can be as rude and offensive as they wish, hiding behind whatever name they choose with no risk to their day-to-day life. And we get to see the fruits of that - all the nastiness that can come from the human imagination.

Tell me again how all people are basically good? Tell me how humans all have a basically decent nature, and so really aren't need of a savior or redemption? When no one is watching, or when hidden in the shadows of the web, what nature do people show to the world? Light? Goodness? Purity? Or all the wickedness that their hearts can imagine?

Look at your world. And see fallen creatures in need of redemption. I may be weary of the rudeness, but I'll keep that to myself. I'll try to live as a bearer of the Image, one who carries the Light. Making the cashier smile at the store. Getting a laugh out of a server at lunch. Giving my doctor an extra hug and letting her know how much we appreciate her. Thanking the guy that carried my purchases out to the van for me as I pushed along in my wheelchair.

And, from time to time, we'll see that Light shine back at us. A door held open. A smile and a wave. A kind word. A hug. And the weariness lifts from our spirits, as we see His Image all around us.

So, instead of seeing the rudeness, I need to look for the Image. Here's to refocusing my eyes, to see what God sees.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Sing Over Me

A friend whose blog I read regularly wrote recently about being prepared. I left a comment, since it touched me, but realized that I responded in Michigan metaphors - "help a neighbor unbury their van" ; "shovel someone's steps", even though she's in Florida. Ah well - we talk about what we know, right? :-D

As she does so well, she also turned things to the spiritual, and it reminded me of something I had experienced. So, here's another entry for The Stones...

Be prepared to help a friend, a neighbor, even a complete stranger to see God in the midst of grief and pain. And, when the deep waters come your way, be prepared to accept that help when you can't do it for yourself.

When I went through the layoff, I couldn't hear God's voice. I couldn't worship. My heart was like lead within me. (Read some of the Psalms where David expresses his deep grief and desolation, and you'll get the idea) The last thing in the world I wanted to do was to go to church on Sunday and worship, much less help lead worship by playing in our band. The light had gone out of my eyes, the warmth from my heart, and my spirit was dead within me.

But my wife wouldn't let me just lie there. She heard God's voice FOR me. She began to speak truth over me. Even when I was sick of hearing it, she continued to remind me of who I am in Christ, of God's love, of His purpose and plan, of the gifts He has given me, and that He never stopped caring for me. My brothers and sisters at church never stopped loving me, checking on me, sending emails and cards reminding me of their love, and showing me God's love through their own. They continued to speak truth over me, without even knowing they were doing it. They just responded to my deep grief and sorrow by coming alongside. No big deal. No quoting Romans 8:28. Living what St. Francis was referring to: "At all times, preach the Gospel. And, when necessary, use words."

Did I immediately become all shiny and new? Did joy suddenly break forth and turn my head around? No. It was a long, LONG process, more than a year of their love and patience, bearing up their wounded brother. Worshiping for me when I couldn't worship. Reminding me of God's truth without saying a word.

Not once did anyone, including Vicki, say something like, "Alright! Snap out of it! Get yourself together! Grow up and take it like a man!" No one told me to sit out of the worship team on Sundays since my heart was like a rock. They just continued to love me, speak truth to me and let me heal. They allowed me (and silently encouraged me) to continue to play at church, knowing that the mechanics of playing would keep me there, until my heart could join my hands and head in the act of worship. No strategy meetings. No discussion. No intervention. :-D Just brothers and sisters coming alongside a wounded friend.

Is the process done now? Am I all better? No. :-D But I'm getting there. I can hear His voice again. I can speak His truth again. Worship is taking longer, but I'm getting there.

Be prepared. Not with a strategy. Not with programs and plans. But with love. Don't think about it. Don't try to figure it out. Just come alongside a wounded friend and be there. Speak truth, don't quote it. Give love, not advice. Worship God for those who can't. Hear His voice, for those who can't. Don't smack them down with a word of knowledge - lift them up with the Voice of Truth. Believe God's promises for those who can't believe themselves. Bear up the wounded brothers and sisters, and bring them to the Master. And when necessary, use words. :-D

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Eye Bee A Bonehead-HeadBONE-BoneHAID!

My wife. Patient. Kind. Loving. And cute.

Me. Dufus.

This morning, as we were on the runway, getting ready for takeoff to our respective accommodations of employment, my keys came up missing. We both remembered where they were from the previous night, but were not now there.

A search ensued. A LONG search. With my patient wife becoming a tad impatient as the minutes ticked by and the deadline to be to work came and went.

After a good 30 minutes or so, I put my hand into the front pocket of my hoodie, wherein lies my cell phone...

and found the keys.

Embarrassment follows. So, publicly, I apologize to my beloved, to her supervisor and co-workers, to her department, and to the republic for which they stand, ad infinitum, e pluribus something-or-other, world without end, play ball.

Bonehead. That's me.

The keys are now back in their usual space, where they usually are to be found. I made sure of that.

Sorry, honey.