Wednesday, June 28, 2017
"The 'I' In the Middle of My Universe"
On my way home from a workout today, I stopped by to pick up lunch for the family. The traffic was "gnarly" and agitating. My GPS mind and my tingling spider-like senses quickly began to devise a route around the congestion. I found myself "despising" the vehicles in front of me, and those who would dare attempt to take the "secret shortcuts" that were reserved for MY convenience alone! After multiple turns, and trying to shake those other pesky motorists that had the audacity to think THEY could somehow discover MY peaceful, out of the way, "undiscovered" escape routes, I found myself sitting on my impatient butt at a red light surrounded by those other "pesky" highway "squatters"! Then I despised them all the more! I glared, huffed and puffed, and sighed disgustingly! (On a side note here, if you happened to be sitting at the intersection of Cool Springs and Mallory Lane today, don't worry, those looks were not meant for you, but rather the OTHER moronic motorists--the ones that DIDN'T know me at all. Just wanted to clear that up.) While sitting there, I noticed there had been a 2 or 3 car accident just ahead of me. Uggghhhhh! My frantic, frustrated mind suddenly geared down to a "shameful" sort of neutral, and like an unexpected "kick to the groin", my selfishness gave way to a feeling of quiet and "humbling" repose. I sat there, listening to Love Himself gently remind me that I was NOT the center of the universe. That MY schedule, or my lunch plans with my family were NOT the axis on which the planet rotated! And then I saw a couple of the people involved in the accident. Talk about a big heaping, helping spoonful of perspective!!!!!! It "snapped" me back to the realization that "rushing" selfishly through ANY moment of life is such a waste. And foolishly viewing life, love, and others through the lens of "HOW DOES IT OR THEY AFFECT ME" is such a sad, lonely, and unfulfilling way to live! What's in it for me? That doesn't work for me! How will that affect me? Is that fair to me? I don't feel like it! I don't care! I need! I want! My way! My time for ME time! Does any of this sound familiar at all to you? It's an all too familiar echo in my ears playing out the words of my own mouth. This realization is quite embarrassing and nauseating, actually! You know something I just realized? The spelling of the word "America"! "Me" and "I" are sitting right there, piously and smuggly in the center of that word! How poetic indeed! How that speaks volumes about the heart and mindset of our country and culture. Have I become a willing conspirator and enabler of my own self-serving culture, creature comforts and conveniences--even to the point of being a slave to my own "freedoms"? Have I allowed my "me-centric" vision to blind me to Love's reality and call to a more fulfilling life? In this new year, my hope is that I will begin to "swim upstream"-- against the rushing current of common culture, against the accepted, even encouraged "status quo" of selfishness, and against the "twisted" definitions of achievement and success--yes, those definitions which are oftentimes "championed" as "The American spirit"! Wanna join me for a swim? Journey on!