I have a not-so-well-kept secret. At times my mood tends to turn dark and everything I look at is pointless. For a while I thought I might be bipolar, but eventually I came to realize that I was just one of many people that feel that way I think they call themselves writers). I’m never really sure what triggers it. Everything is going along fine, and suddenly the good ship lollipop begins to sink into the mire and the rainclouds of doom and gloom move in. Over the years I have learned to recognize when I am descending into the ‘valley’ between the waves. If I actively look at all the positive things going on , I may not be able to stop it, but I can at least lessen the grip of despair that use to envelope me. I don’t always succeed, and I would like to give each one of my family a medal for putting up with me during those times. Times when they stand in front of the waves of despair bracing themselves behind shields of positive comments, and generous actions forcing a way through those storms to keep me from drowning. They really have no idea how much they bolster my confidence, how much they help me through the darkness. They are my best defense against the depressions of life. They are invaluable to me. If you know somebody that suffers these bouts, maybe you can remember this post and it will help you understand. Maybe you can be their invaluable friend or family member. Maybe you can be their best defense
I started this blog as a way for the people that read my stories to get to know me. People that read these entries are reading my thoughts and ideas. Those things that I wonder about and contemplate as I wander through this life. It is mostly made up of things I have come to understand in the spirit. The name came from my story “Stars of the Kanri”. Cowboys were scouts, people who explored the planets that had been discovered, cataloging items for further study or use in the civilized world. “Heavy Metal” was the description of the lead character after God set him on the path he was destined to travel. The tagline was not an accident either I thought long and hard over what I wanted to convey with it. “Musings of a Wandering Paladin.” It was more of an aspiration than anything else. That is what I try to be. I don’t always succeed, but I do try. In any event, the ‘blog’ has grown into something more. Some would call it a journal, I guess. Since I usually write my blogs on Mondays, posting them late Monday night, it usually has a spiritual theme running through it. It is the day after I have processed the sermon from Sunday and had time to ‘digest’ it. I share these thoughts and experiences with you people who read my entries in hopes of ‘picking you up’ and giving hope to those who sometimes see so much darkness and despair that they forget there is hope out there. God knows there are times when I feel like that myself. I do not write these entries because I think I am better than anyone else. I simply write them to share my hopes, dream, and discoveries with those of you interested enough to tune in and read them. You may wonder why this blog has taken this direction. I was in an excellent mood today as things went along, and I realized that I hadn’t done my Bible Study today. I had recently finished up Judges and hadn’t really settled on which Book to move my study to next, so I opened my Bible and a verse caught my eye. It was in Ecclesiastes. As I read the words written by the wise King Solomon, I realized that this was his ‘blog’. I read through several of the bleak chapters and finally finished the Book on the positive side. All that he wrote was what he was pondering, and he did end it with his revelation on the meaning of life. (I won’t spoil it for you by posting it here. =) ) So all of this post has been about the way people ‘blogged’ back in ‘Bible Times’. They just didn’t realise how far into the future their readers would be. So to all of those reading this-now and in the unforeseeable future- thank you. You mean a lot to me even if you don’t realize it.
Things were going great. I could see all kinds of great possibilities lining up for me on the horizon. I sat there leisurely holding the wheel and coasting toward it when suddenly a huge wave appeared just off the port bow. The wave hit and tipped the ship of my life up on its side, nearly drowning me and my crew in the process. The good things I had seen on the horizon were suddenly lost in a fog of doubt and self-assessment. The wave hadn’t sunk us, but it had managed to draw our attention back from our daydreams and wishful thinking to immediate here and now, where we found ourselves still reeling and floundering trying to regain our bearings. This is the time that the Devil waits for. This is the time when his lies have the most effect on a person. Those time when we wonder what it was that we did to deserve this. I, being human, was wondering just that when the second wave hit. I was almost washed overboard into a sea of despair, thinking I had failed in everything that I had set out to do. Not only had I failed, I had failed miserably. Or so the enemy would have me to believe. You see, during all that time where I was leisurely steering my ship, I had let things slip my attention. Things I should have been paying attention to went unnoticed. This is the waves that sprang like magic out of the blue. The clouds were always there, I had just blinded myself to them, focusing on things way in the future. Above all, I had forgotten that my God is sovereign. ALL of this is according to His grand design. The great things that were there on the horizon may still be there, just beyond the mist that clouds the here and now, but I must see about fixing my ship and setting my crew to rights. Sometimes it takes a dunking to keep you from drowning.
I remember a sermon I once heard while attending Welcome No. 1 Baptist Church. It was quite a while back, and I don’t recall who the preacher was (I was really young). The preacher said that he had prayed for a message to bring to the congregation and the Lord had granted him one on the unrepentant going to hell. This can’t be right, the preacher thought. Everyone that attends church has been saved. I know them all. The preacher brought the message that the Lord had given him, and no one moved. The Spirit that had given him the message was at peace, so he knew he had obeyed as he should have. The following week the preacher prayed again, and again got a message on the lost going to hell. Again he preached the word and the Spirit was at peace. A third week went by and again another message on hell. After that the weeks that followed were the normal messages one would expect to be preached in a Believing Church. It was many months later before the reason for his messages were revealed. A man came up to the preacher and introduced himself.
“Preacher, you don’t know me, but I live by that little church where you pastor, and I just wanted to say thank you for preaching God’s Word. You see, I was in the field next to that little church one Sunday, and God convicted my heart. He dealt with me for three weeks. Three weeks I was in that field every Sunday, dreading hearing the Word, but knowing I had to hear it. On the 3rd week I was saved out there by an old stump. I just wanted to say thanks.”
I will remember that message to my dying day. It has given me strength at times when I thought I had none. Remember, sometimes God may ask you to do things that do not seem normal to you, and keep in mind you may never know why in this life, but God knows. And your actions may be the only thing that helps that ‘lost soul’ find His Way.
I haven’t written poetry in a long time. I think it has been about 15 years, give or take a few, but as I have scanned headlines, and read articles of current events I have felt the words swelling in my heart. So I wrote a new poem for this great country that I love so dearly, and I pass it on to you, my readers, all the while hoping against hope that disaster can be averted. Fearing at the same time that the crystal goblet has already tumbled from our hands and all we can do is watch and wait for it to shatter as it strikes the floor. It is with great sadness that I give you my latest work.
A cold wind blows across the land,
And devastation follows close at hand.
A once great nation creaks and groans,
as politicians gnaw her bones.
The spring and summer of her years,
Have faded into a fall of tears.
In memory we cried together,
Our enemies in fear were tethered.
Laws we made with honest seals,
Are now corrupted by shady deals.
Arrogant leaders spite the people,
Pointing fingers at church steeples.
They stir up hate and malcontent,
To hide a corrupted government.
With gilded lies they promise vapors,
With plans that only work on paper.
A wink and a nod is all you will see,
While being forced to bend your knee,
To a new world order of poverty,
Where freedom is a bittersweet memory.
For after fall the winter comes,
Revealing hidden ledger sums.
As we start to feel the cold,
Our liberties have already been sold.
Rusty hinges and brittle gates,
Are all that shield our beloved states.
And as the Eagle fights the Raven,
Our epitaph is being graven,
By the petty thieves that we elect,
That lied and promised to protect.
Even if we turn today,
How much of our heritage is left to save?
So with a hollow heart on a bended knee,
I humbly pray for our country.
God turn us from our paths of sin
And bless our country once again.
Sometimes you find out that you are in the wrong in some situations. Maybe not fully in the wrong, but still in the wrong never-the-less. At those times you stop and contemplate where your life is headed, what your goals are and why you find yourself in the wrong. If you don’t, then you should. These are lessons in disguise and sometimes they hurt more than just yourself. Unfortunately I tend to have an amazing ability to find myself in the student’s desk with fresh ruler marks on the back of my hands. That being said, I still try not be too proud to admit when I am wrong. I may not always see it at the time, but when hindsight kicks in I do try and make amends. I can be more successful on some occasions than others. Still I will make the attempt. Sometimes the only way to move forward is to step back, evaluate the circumstances and make a better informed decision. It is a whole lot easier to turn around and find a better path than to try to continue wading through the thorns you find blocking you. If you find yourself in these situations, don’t be afraid to admit it. I don’t believe there has ever been a case of someone choking to death from swallowing their pride. It’s never pleasant, but it almost always turns out to be more beneficial than nurturing the bitterness it causes in your spirit
I turned on my radio today and heard Lady Antebellum singing ‘Hey Bartender’. As I listened to the lyrics of the song I felt saddened that this is how we are showing people how to deal with their problems. No, I am not preaching about alcohol. I talking about telling people to ‘drown’ their heartaches. That isn’t an answer. It’s a patch, maybe. Maybe it will cause you forget the pain. For a little while. We all have pain and suffering in this life. It is an integral part of it. There isn’t any way to avoid it, but getting drunk to forget about it isn’t going to help matters. If you’re drunk enough not to remember then you’re drunk enough to do something stupid. Something you could regret when you somber up enough to realize what you did. Yet here we are telling people that this will fix it for ya! This line of thinking led into how the media bombards us with messages of ‘Alcohol makes it better!’, ‘Drugs make it better!’, ’Sex makes it better!’. All these things are false leads. They are just patches that only work for a short duration, if that. There is no true resolutions there. These are pale imitations of things that the Devil throws at you to keep you from realizing the truth. Not only that, they usually come with a multitude of ‘fish hooks’ embedded in them, and the more you use them the better chance you have of getting snared by something that is only going to make the situation worse. When you base your happiness in this world, the pain of loss or tragedy can become too great to bear. So you cover it up with patches. There is a better way. Talk to the Tailor. You think that if He created all things that He can’t fix a torn heart?