Coffee in My Garden – Throwing Rocks
When I was in my teens and twenties I knew exactly how the world should be and said so at length whether anyone asked me or not. If only I were in charge of the world it would be a much better place. The World According to Me would have been an absolute paradise.
Now I’m a bit older and as I’ve grown older I’ve come to realize that other people also carry their version of the World According to Me and it may be the absolute opposite of mine. And they are just as convinced as Twenty-Something Me was that their vision is the true and correct one and anyone who doesn’t feel exactly as they do on every possible issue is an idiot.
The older I get I also realize I don’t have time to fix the world the way I so valiantly did when I was younger, living at home where my mother cooked, sewed, and did most of the cleaning and I had all that spare time. I also realize I am not as perfect as I was back then and it’s all I can do to fix myself. Some days I can’t even manage that.
All I can do is be the best person I can possibly be at any given moment, look to my heavenly Father who made me for insight on what He had in mind when He created me, what He created me for, and what my next step should be on that journey. That and being there for my family and friends (at home) and my coworkers and patients (at work) pretty much takes up all my time.
As I’ve grown older I’ve learned that today’s hot button “everyone has to be feel this way or else” issue may very well be next year’s or next decade’s or next century’s “what were they thinking?” and the same position may be as unpopular now as it was popular then.
If someone asks me for advice (which they frequently do) I will give it. Whether they take it or not is up to them.
If I’m in a discussion group and we are all expected to contribute, I do.
If I see someone I love running into traffic (metaphorically speaking) or walking blindfolded at the edge of a cliff, I will say something, because I love them, I may see something they don’t see, and I don’t want them to get hurt. If they decide they are perfectly capable of running across that eight-lane superhighway unscathed, that’s on them, but if they do end up under a truck at least they know I loved them enough to try to warn them (even if they yelled at me for it at the time).
One of my dad’s favorite sayings was “Don’t kick me when I’m down. Pick me up, brush me off, and set me straight.” I try to do that and appreciate it when it’s done to me.
I try not to say “I told you so” except when someone says
Them: You saw that coming. Why didn’t you tell me?
Me: I did. You told me to shut up and mind my own business.
Them: Oh yeah.
Other than that, I read, I write, I study, I give thanks, I help those I can, fix what I can and pray about the rest.
I’ve also learned to (in the words of my mother and Theodore Roosevelt)
“Do what you can with what you have where you are.”
I’ve learned over the years that at any given moment we are all doing the best we can with what we have where we are. Tomorrow, in five years, or maybe in five minutes we may think of something better.
“When you know better, you do better” – Maya Angelou
When we’re tempted to let loose with our totally justified (in our eyes) sack full of rocks, remember what Jesus said –
“Let he who is without sin cast the first stone” – Jesus
Jesus didn’t say “If that’s not your particular stone it’s okay to throw it because you’re oh so much better/more enlightened/whatever than the person you’re throwing your rock at.”
No one that day was without sin.
No one today is either.
Jesus also said –
“Go and sin no more”
He didn’t say “You, woman caught in adultery, go and sin no more, the rest of you can do whatever” he said “Go and sin no more.”
Fat chance of that, especially in this world, but it shouldn’t stop us from trying.
Just realize some days may be better than others.
For all of us.