Outside my window the trees bend eastward; palms and pines shaking moisture from frond and needle. We are into our third day of rain. I delight in the brisk wind and smack of cold I feel as I step outside the house. Its how I want God and verve to blow into my life; fresh and clear; brisk, sharp, cold---invigorating. I think that the shaking is happening; the blowing and clearing my life of dead stuff. Not a quick storm; it’s more a shaking season. It’s less invigorating and more frustrating.
“According to Christian teachers, the essential vice, the utmost evil, is Pride. Unchastity, anger, greed, drunkenness, and all that, are mere fleabites in comparison: it was through Pride that the devil became the devil: Pride leads to every other vice: it is the complete anti-God state of mind,” writes Lewis in Mere Christianity. I have a sense that the rebellious employee and the demanding supervisor at work are placed there to bring me up against my own selfishness. I have these conversations with Christ and ask him how He did it? How did He live among us; put up with us and love us? I don’t serve well and I want revenge when you go against me. The wind blows cold and smoothes layers off my thick skin.
Life delivers these growth opportunities to my door. I’m never asked to sign and approve delivery; they just show up uninvited; the good and the bad. The choice then is mine; to ignore or to improve. Minute by minute I decide to move into doing the right thing. I deliver ice to the Service Deli as requested by that areas’ manager---though I’ve a million things to do. I am frustrated but pray and choose to serve. At home I sit down to write some paragraphs believing my writing will be improved. It’s the walking against the wind where we grow. Usually that is the case. Sometimes we stand still and just hold on. Always the decision to move forward—or at least to stay standing—is ours.
If you look around you its easy to see complacency. You don’t have to look far to see reacting. Finding people that choose to act is much more difficult. The couch potato and the sluggard live next door to every one of us. The fighter is hard to find---albeit hard to be.
The wind blows harder, colder; everything shakes. The sky above is still grey. In the distance there is bright blue; the grey pales against it. I can almost reach out and touch the blue. The season will pass. Spring will come with perfumed air; bright skies and life. It’s only a season. I press forward. I hold on. We press forward. We hold on.