It’s last Monday morning and according to the weather report — and somebody got it right this time — it’s raining very hard with thunder and lightning, and it’s nice to be inside looking out. This afternoon, we have a 100 percent chance of very heavy rain, high winds and a get-ready-to-hunker-down warning, which I will do my best to follow the directions. One of my colleagues has just told me we’re not supposed to have this kind of stuff this late in the year. Since he teaches Algebra, what does he know? He knows this: it is one great day to be alive!
Old Bob is my kind of guy. I guess this is true because we think much alike for the most part. No matter what might happen today, we will cherish these moments because we are alive and have the choice to decide to either live with great expectation or feel like giving up and go hide somewhere until the feeling passes. We will choose great expectation.
I still remember a student who came by to sit down and tell me what a miserable day he was having. The world is no good and there are no opportunities. He is a victim of his surroundings and he is powerless. Those who, because of luck, have it all are unwilling to share and those who are unlucky, who knows why, will always remain hopeless and in despair. He is a member of those who have no hope. I listened to this young man pour out his soul to a world that he believed never listens, never replies and never offers any positive alternatives. He sat there for a long, long time. I kept waiting for him to look at me and ask, “Why?,” but I felt he really didn’t want some meaningless conversation like, “All this will pass. We all feel negativity now and then. Good things are just around the corner. Go see the counselor.”
I said to him, “Look out the window and tell me what you see.”
He stood by the big plate glass window and asked, “What do you want me to see?”
I asked again, “What do you see?”
“Well, I see a bunch of trees and bushes. Are you happy now?”
“Do you see anything different?”
There was a long pause.
“Well, that tree, the one right there, looks like it doesn’t belong.”
I said, “That one is sort of like you.”
“Yeah, that’s kinda like me.”
I replied, “I wish I knew why that tree popped up out of nowhere. Where did it come from and how can it be so tough to survive all by itself?”
“I guess that tree survives because it never gave up! Is that what you want me to say?”
“I had no idea what you would see or what you would say. All I hoped for is that you could step out of yourself for just a moment and allow something to happen. It did. I hope you feel better.”
More than once, I have felt as though God — anthropomorphically speaking — just sits back and watches what His creations are going to do. Perhaps God knows and then again, perhaps He suspends His Omniscience and allows the moment to happen spontaneously without any interference. It’s not that we are without any prior knowledge, but we must learn, sometimes painfully, how to look at all the possible choices, pick the most appropriate and deal with the outcome. If anything, one of the most important thoughts we must have is that God comes first! Whatever follows then has purpose!
“Look out the window and tell God what you see. Where do you fit in this great scheme of things? It’s your choice!”