“FREEDOM!!!” WIlliam Wallace shouts out at the top of his lungs with his last breath in the climax scene in Braveheart. I sit on the couch, clutching my blanket, tears in my eyes, and my heart is moved.
There are some words that just have to be shouted.
Friday, March 23, 2012
But by the grace of God go I
I had been out on that stupid surfboard for what seemed like hours. I was prune-y and frustrated. I hate being frustrated. I hadn’t caught a single wave. Not one stupid wave. All the people around me had caught them and then paddled back out with what I imagined were smug little smiles of satisfaction at being able to do what I could not. I was done. I started paddling back to shore with a sour frown on my face. Corey caught me half way there. “What are you doing?” he asked. “I’m going in! I hate this stupid board! I can’t do it, I’m done. I give up. It’s a waste of money me being here! I’m going to go and give this to someone who can actually use it and have fun! Blaargaaahhh!”
(Blaargaaahhh may not be the actually spelling, insert general noise of frustration here.)
In wisdom brought on by nearly three years of marriage Corey let me go without trying to encourage me to keep going. I continued my grumpy paddle towards the shore, with strength brought on by impatience. A wave came up from no where (directly behind me) and picked me and my board up and carried us along. “Huh. I caught a wave. I guess I should stand up.” So I stood up and voila! I was surfing. By accident. Yay me. I laughed my head off as I surfed along, which eventually tossed me off my board. I had a huge smile on my face as I humbly pulled up onto the shore, very aware of my short comings and God’s sense of humor.
This experience has served me as a reminder that it is but for the grace of God that I can do anything. I have come home from my holiday ready to jump back into my work with a humble attitude of “but for the grace of God go I.” I could try and try and try, and without God I have nothing. With Him I have Everything.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
It was snowing outside. With keys in my hand I leaned over the receptionist's desk and told Shari, “You know how when it’s snowing people say “I’m comfortable with my driving, it’s everyone else on the road that scares me.” Well...” She laughs and completes my sentence with “You are the everyone else, eh?” I laugh along, but let out a nervous twitch as I watch those little white flakes of doom continue to fall from the sky. “It’s true. I’m the everyone else. I suck at driving in the snow, and so as a favor to the rest of humanity, I’m going home before this snow starts to stick.”
I am everyone else. That’s the phrase that stuck with me as I drove home, gripping the steering wheel with an iron grip, suspicious that it was about to develop a mind of its own and crash us into the nearest available solid object. I am everyone else. Hmmm...
It’s anti-bullying day today. Bullying is awful. It’s existed forever, this is no new problem, but it has transformed a bit. It’s expanded and developed to be a tech-savvy creature. The most recent incident I encountered with bullying was when one of my teens showed me a text messaging conversation she had had over the weekend. The content was unbelievable. Then she showed me the advertisement that bully had put up on craigslist. It had her picture, her name and phone number. This girl had to change her phone number because she was getting phone calls from “Johns” looking to buy sex. This is bullying.
There are three roles in the bullying scenario. The first is the victim. The second is the bully. The third, and most important role, is everyone else. If everyone who witnessed bullying in it’s different forms stood up and stopped it, bullies would have a much more difficult time. As you walk by the park and see three little boys being mean to a fourth kid, do you walk on and mind your own business? Yes you do. Of course you do. We all do. We are the everyone else. That’s our role.
This is a call out to Everyone Else. Let’s take our role more seriously. Get Involved. Be a nosey neighbor. (If everyone had nosey neighbors domestic abuse would be much less common, but that’s another rant for another snow day.) Refuse to stay silent and watch. At the mall, in Tim Hortons, on the side of the road where your car is stuck in a snow bank, wherever you are, Get Involved. Speak Up. I dare you.