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Friday, April 07, 2006

share cropping, peace and the M's

This morning I went to the gym to bike and read my Young Life/Jesus book of the month: The Divine Conquest. Now there is nothing worse than being in the middle of a fabulous Tozer sentence like, "Only the Spirit can save us from the numbing unreality of Spiritless Christianity..." to be interrupted by an old man's outpouring of his inner, well, flatulence. I guess I should have taken note of my surroundings before firmly planting myself on the bike, so I didn't heed warning of the influx of oldies around 9 am. But there he was. I heard him before I saw him. And in between his power walking on the treadmill, a sharecropping of farts came forth. One for every step. I started laughing so hard [Marsh, we're talking YOUR kind of laugh!], and any previous concentration on the book was quickly gone. Before I knew it, the situation worsened, as a distinctive smell start wafting through the air. Do I risk losing the calories burned to move to another bike? Should I mention to him that I heard him, smelled him, and that he's in a public place? Oh Bally's....

This morning in Campaigners we talked about PEACE. What is peace? What are symbols of peace? Is it possible to experience peace in the midst of chaos and turmoil? What does it mean to have inner peace even when the outside doesn't seem to agree? Peace seems to be my lesson of the week. In addition to life seeming to throw a couple of curveballs my way, two dear oldies from my childhood passed away, Mrs. Givens, my piano teacher of 9 years, and Jerry, my neighbor of 20 years. So this morning I showed my 8th grade girls Jerry's funeral program; here was a man who, due to polio, spent almost 50 years of his life confined to a wheelchair. According to the world's standards, Jerry's life was chaos. But according to Jerry, his life was far from it. Instead, when you were around him, you experienced pure joy. His humor was like medicine to the bones, one sarcastically witty comment at a time. He had SO much to complain about, yet he chose not to...he had an inner peace about him that didn't allow for his own momentary troubles to affect another person's. Can I apply those same principles to my own life? His life reminded me of Morrie Schwartz from the book (and now movie), Tuesdays with Morrie; I read this book to different groups of students every year because Morrie stood for the same concepts as Jerry. He was dying in the book...yet he cared more about Mitch (Albom, the author) than he did about his own light, momentary struggles. "...our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us..." - Romans 8:18. Hmm.

Tonite one of my Young Life kids is taking ME to a Mariner's game! How rad it that?! The one stipulation was that I drive...but hey, free M's tickets and awesome one-on-one time with a kid?! I'm in!

5 comments:

Gibbytron said...

Stoked you get to go to Safeco! That's a sweeeeet park... Even though the Mariners play there (hehe), but thankfully my distaste for them is not as strong as the Yankees... :) See you in, like, 67 hours!

Brenda Joy said...

My fart story:

I scanned the sweetest 83 year old woman. After the test she visited with one of our surgeons. After her doctors appointment she came back to my exam room, and took my hand. Looking oh-so-sweetly at me she said "Thank you Brenda, for doing my test today, and being so nice" and as she said "nice" she farted.

Loud.

And she giggled like a 10 year old school girl, smiled, said "opps!" and was on her way....

Ah, the joys of gas.

Gina said...

Many props to you for hanging in there at the gym, even through the old man's farting epidemic! If this wasn't a reason to leave the gym, I don't know what is. Guess they won't be seeing you in there at 9am anytime soon, eh? Too funny!! Thanks for the giggles. Come to Vegas May 5th!!!

aleahmac said...

hello hello caramacky, so yes, first, oh the love of old farters. whyyyy why why. yes, i understand, the geriatric elevator tooter, or the 300 lb smelly woman laying out a fart worthy of gas masks and protective gear, directly in coworkers faces . aaah, yes it wasn't me, thank God.
anyway, CHEERS to jerry, and mrs givens... With working in a hospital and tending to see the worst of the worst, i tend to experience the most grouchy, not-caring (about themselves, or anyone) alive, that really don't want to be because of low quality of life people. but there are always those few, that even in their hell that we take pity on, ask you how you day is and 'why the long face' when your day is going crappy and they actually stop and ask. while they're in a hospital bed...
thats what i see them doing. don't know if its recently true, haven't seen them much in years, but thats what i see ... teaching piano for 70(?) years, and jerry making you laugh your ass off all the time cause hell, its just more fun to not to feel pity for yourself. cheers again..
ciao sister of moi...SMILE:)!!!

caramac said...

Bennett: yes, they sorely lost, but Safeco's a cool stadium. :)
Brenda...thank you for sharing in the flatulence. See you for Easter!
Gina: I SO wish I could do Vegas, but, well, read your email...:)
Aleah mackey: Sister of mine. I think you enjoy the gas masks of hospital work....
Love you all! chm:)