I’m not one to be controversial. Or antagonistic. Quite honestly, I don’t see the point. Ultimately what we believe in life can only really impact ourselves as individuals. I have raised my children with what I believe to be a set of values that will help enrich and fulfill them for a lifetime. It is up to them to determine now, as adults, if they truly believe what I believe. I cannot believe for them.
This weekend is a huge weekend for a large part of our world.
And meaningless for a large part of our world.
I’m okay with that. I think diversity is important. I think it’s healthy. I think honoring and respecting others beliefs can make us better people, even if we don’t hold the same beliefs.
To a point.
If you believe bringing harm to children is in any way a good thing, you’re an idiot.
Certain beliefs are not up for discussion or debate or consideration. There are more examples, but I think the above proves the point well enough. The key to my whole argument is honor and respect. A little more of that in the world and maybe it wouldn’t seem such a scary place at times. And that goes for every seat at the table. I’m not going to call anyone out. I’m going to call EVERYONE out.
We have a responsibility to hold ourselves accountable. Regardless of your beliefs, I hope that is the lasting message this weekend. Thanks for letting me rant…
I had a conversation with God yesterday.
It has been a while since we’ve talked, too, and it wasn’t all hugs and kisses. You see, I have this fundamental belief that God isn’t always going to tell me what I want to hear. I need that. It brings me perspective.
I was immersed in the salt water of the Pacific Ocean. The heavens were filled with blue sky and yellow sun. The air was cool, but not cold. The water was refreshing. I was in the company of my closest friend.
Both the northern and southern hemispheres have had storms of late that have sent the ocean swelling thousands of miles toward the California coast. The surf wasn’t perfect. It was a little mixed up in direction (North? South?) and a slight onshore breeze gave the water just the slightest of bumpy texture. The mixed swell and full moon made for a strong current and odd tide. My body, recently conditioned for lots and lots of mountain climbing was unaccustomed to the toil of surfing. The surf wasn’t perfect, but that’s not the point.
I was in the water.
For me, the ocean cleanses my soul. It releases my mind of thought and worry. The salt clings to my skin and reminds me of the fullness and richness and flavor of my life. In it I am buoyant, the weight of my physical being is held for me by the power of the ocean. A moving ocean. A living force that engulfs me. It washes over me and is calm or it lifts me into her swell and fills me with her energy and her force. Her force. Mother Ocean. All at once I am filled with joy and elation and the power that I am one with the universe and this world. All at once I am reminded how small and fragile I really am. She speaks to me.
I had a conversation with God yesterday. Like I said before, not all hugs and kisses. I was in the water for a couple of hours and stopped paddling only twice. The current was strong. It was a reminder that I haven’t been to see her in a while. A few waves crashing on the head was another reminder that I should probably visit more often. It was also a reminder of who’s in charge. But the conversation wasn’t all tough love, either.
I was given a few gifts, as well. The perfect moment when I felt the energy of the ocean beneath me. The shining face of the wave yawned out before me. The strength and exertion of my effort to paddle into the wave was rewarded with the exhilaration of letting Mother Ocean push me along the swell. The wind in my face. The glimmer of the water. The energy beneath me.
The perfect moment doesn’t last long, but that doesn’t make it any less perfect.
The true gifts came with the bubbling of the water around me. I was surrounded by dolphins at play. They ride the ocean energy better than any other animal in the water. Yesterday I could sense their joy. It was infectious.
I would be doing the experience injustice if I continued the attempt at describing it. My joy remains beyond words. Overall, the morning left me feeling humbled and reenergized. The lessons of my sermon remain mine alone.
I can tell you…it left me wanting more. As fulfilled and satisfied as I was with my conversation yesterday, I am giddy with anticipation for my next visit. My next lesson. Though God isn’t always going to tell me what I want to hear, I still need the message. I still need the time alone to reflect and learn. It is a reminder of the things I need to do to hold myself accountable for who I am in this world.
And the rewards are fun and magnificent and glorious…