You know how the west was won? The good guy shot the bad guy. Do you ever wonder what our crime rate would be like if we had good ol’ fashion public hangings still? Clearly we needed to “civilize” the west, but I am not certain everything shook out as it should.
I have been in the middle of serious dilemmas lately. I have been struggling with the idea of making sure people see Jesus within me and my insatiable desire to chop block some jackholes (note the creative removal of the naughty word I am not suppose to say). We were in Wal-Mart and Roy, Jake and Matt were attempting to exit the boy’s clothing section, when an older, well-dressed, walking-with-a-purpose gentleman, who on the wrong side of traffic, came blazing past everyone nearly knocking one or two of my family out of the way. We had just left church and we had heard John Hackbarth speak an excellent message about Jesus calling the disciples. John spoke about the most important things we must do as Christians is to make sure we put people first. People matter. Then we go to Wal-mart and my next thought is that people also need punched in the nose…
How do we draw the line between grace and a swift kick in the pants?
How do we handle situations with patience and still move forward in a timely manner? Jesus drew a line in the sand with his finger. When a line is that thin, you cannot stand on it – literally our feet are too wide to stand on a line drawn by a finger. I think that is the point. You either have to stand on one side or the other. For those of you trying to think outside of the box and wanting to straddle the line with both feet, the answer is a resounding NO. No you may not do that. We have to pick a side. Our real dilemma is our constant desire to exhibit grace when we are frustrated, patience when we are fed up with a situation, and love when we are mad at someone. I don’t think I am going to be able to finish figuring this out tonight. I hope not to punch anyone tomorrow though.
My family had a wonderful Christmas. A typical ranching Christmas. We soaked up presents from Santa and then Roy left to go do chores for a couple of hours. Upon his return the boys tore up the presents under the tree. We waltzed around the Christmas tree that evening and I got my very first cap gun! Being raised by “The Great American Hunter” I am sorely disappointed that I never experienced the sheer excitement of popping off a cap gun until I was 33. We were very fortunate that the smoke alarm didn’t go off. December 26 roared like a lion as I went to meet with a neurosurgeon. After my port was removed in late September, I woke up the next morning with the most irritatingly painful kink in my neck. That kink is still there and does not show any signs of letting up. I have had severe headaches and decreased mobility. I can’t even look in my own blind spot while driving. After my own 12 Days of Christmas… 5 chiropractic appointments, 2 massages and 1 physical therapist, I had an MRI done. Both my primary care physician and oncologist saw no red flags. My 2nd chiropractor on the other hand was highly alarmed by the presence of possible cysts along my spinal cord. It put us in a bit of a panic. I saw two very real possibilities: cancer again or dangerous surgery near my spinal cord. After the consultation on the 26th with the neurosurgeon he gave us both great and somewhat frustrating news. Good news: no cancer, no surgery. Frustrating news: no solution. We are still working through the idea of remedial care.
At this point, I am not sure it is safe for anyone to read this. I do not want to be responsible for a good black eye, but then again, maybe I do…
January 2014 are you here yet? I am incredibly thankful for all that I experienced in 2013, but I think a fresh start sounds pretty good right about now. I hope you had an incredibly Merry Christmas and that a superb New Year is around the corner for you and yours.