Thursday, 13 April 2017

But It's Backwards!! by Susan L.

  "I am assured of success" Proverbs 16:3
  A long pause.

  This has been an especially difficult post. I've written stuff, deleted it, written, deleted for the last two hours. I think it's because it is extremely judgemental.
  It is.
  That's why there's italic statements. Added after I re-read the following post.

  The world paints a picture, minus the negative points in brackets:
  Stay in school. Earn a degree. (Owe a whole whack of money. Wonder why because there aren't any jobs.) Work hard. Buy things. Get a promotion. Work harder. Get married. Have children. Buy more things. (Owe more money. Have surgery for an ulcer.) Learn golf to relax. Work out at the gym. Eat organic. Get a designer pet. Feed Muffin organic food, too. (Spend thousands fighting the signs of age.) Retire. Become a snow bird. A grandparent. A great-grandparent if lucky enough to live that long.
  In stripping down a life to the bare bones, I missed so much. Laughter, tears, celebrations and milestones. I've slashed away the value of personhood into short sentences.
  Being a grand-parent is such a joy!
  There's nothing wrong with having a home and a mortgage or even owing money on a car. We all need a place to live.
  And that is a statement fully based in middle-class assumptions. Why is there homelessness in one of the wealthiest nations? Maybe because I've done nothing to help create solutions.
  Skyrocketing house prices and rent might make this an unobtainable dream for many. A car is often a necessity, like mine is, because there isn't public transit available.
  Yet another middle-class assumption.
  We North Americans have so much that is taken for granted. (oops, that's a generalized judgement. Not everyone takes what we have for granted.)
  I take so much for granted!
  The paragraph of life was more of a rant against the "successful life" ideology bombarding us all the time. Debt is encouraged by ads providing the source for more credit, lotteries or casinos. Ulcers are only mentioned in relation to medications to ease the symptoms. Heart attacks are staged as an ad for aspirin.
  For someone with a graphic arts diploma, I sure hate advertising!
  For someone who once lived by the world's laws, it's awfully pretentious of me to sit on the other side and point fingers.
  I hate it so much because it makes "successful" impossible. Or maybe that's the point. It leads us to spend our way out of feeling inadequate. Like that would ever happen. The devil wouldn't let it.
  So why do I buy into it still? Why do I feel like there's something missing?

  Another long pause after adding the italic statements.
  Forgive me Lord, for my arrogance.

  I call this day a success because, with the gentle conviction of the Holy Spirit, I have seen the error of my ways.
  Success, in Christ, is not by adding to anything I have but it's in the letting go and letting in.
  Success is measured in my ability to love and be loved.
  Show me, my Lord, how to love better.
  And I laugh because I hadn't read the scripture before starting this post.
  "Commit your works to the Lord, and your thoughts will be established." Prov 16:3


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