Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Want To Know If You're Old? Start Making Rules About Everything

I finally watched some of the Olympics last night. The swimming and the women's gymnastics but I already knew the outcome of that, so it was easier to watch. This year the hype hasn't pulled me in although there are some good stories out there. Some years I totally buy into the hoopla and here of late it is more of a I'll read about it on Twitter.

Yesterday I took a little trip to TN. The drive is just so beautiful especially when returning to NC from TN. My tennis shoes are worn out on the inside thus making them rather uncomfortable. Since Asheville doesn't have an Academy, a trip to Johnson City was in order. They are good to carry the bigger sizes in tennis shoes which unfortunately is what I need. It took longer than I had planned to find some shoes and purchase them. Then I stopped in at Barnes and Noble because...well, I don't have to have a reason but it was National Book Lovers Day and it was a must situation to go and pay iand the book I was interested in hadn't come in. I felt guilty but I bought the book on Amazon from inside the store. There were a few more stops before returning home. My Ivy League educated fruit flies had better beware, I have new fruit fly traps and this should get me through the rest of summer.

You can feel a little bit of fall in the air and every once in a while the fragrance of fall greets you on a breeze. No fog this morning but it is overcast. It is lovely experiencing all four seasons of the year.

It is now Wednesday afternoon. I made a quick trip to Waynesville to pick up something for Lisa and ended up at Belk's and then at Barber's Orchard. The clouds were low and gray. The mountains looked to be getting rain and it wasn't too much longer that the rain made travel along I 40 more difficult than difficult. I 40 isn't always kind but seems to be kinder than I 26. I debated whether I should make a lunch stop at The Blue Rooster but the rain and the fact I had eaten a lot of southern comfort food lately made the decision easier to come on home and make a sandwich. Then I took a nap for the ages. I really don't nap as much as I used to but the past few nights I have experienced a little insomnia, which is something I rarely experience.

So it seems all the rage these days from authors is the simple life, being mindful, staying present, decluttering and everything that goes along with that. I agree that life needs to be simpler and maybe not so fast paced. Fortunately, I am able to experience that because of the change of pace and place which Mark Batterson writes about because change of pace and place changes perspective. It is true this past year has definitely changed my perspective. Life isn't as intense and you don't have people constantly worrying about their named ministry and the direction it is going or not going around here. The need to put yourself out there on social media, spinning a narrative and creating a platform isn't even given a second thought. Points from the sermon are not in 140 characters for Twitter. No, it seems like you have the come and go flow of life and living life with one another on a very real level. It is a welcomed change for me. I laughed with a friend the other night about the utter absurdity of the church trying to control late comers or early leavers. In the age of web streaming, I might want to attend small group and grab the church service on my phone over brunch. Really, this whole thing is so dysfunctional. For years we have been told to park offsite and to move to the center of the aisle to leave seats open for late comers which I have written before about...because it is just enabling lateness when we are asked to do this. If you are tall and have long legs, you prioritize getting end of row seats for just about anything you attend...those who are shorter do not know this pain. Now your welcome team has become more like enforcers. This didn't work about eight years ago when something like this was attempted. If you left the service, you had to return through a back door and sit in the back. People want to return and sit with their family or friends. Yes, it draws your attention off the stage momentarily but I think we all can agree that God is bigger than a late comer. I have always heard that you will know when you have turned old because you begin making rules...rules about this and that but more about control. When Dena and I went to The Billy Graham Library several weeks ago, we experienced just that thing. Volunteers there tend to be on the older side and a warm welcome was more of a non smiling man pointing out directions and guidelines to you than welcoming you to this very fine place. You did well if you went with the crowd in the "self guided" tour but if you wanted to tarry or dare I say, leave the tour to go to the bookstore, there was a grim faced response to your attempt at freedom and a finger wagging at your face to sit down and watch the video. I don't know why Dena and I know about that. Finally at the end where you are given the opportunity to accept Christ in the decision room, I asked if we could leave and go to the bookstore but I qualified our reasons giving full assurance of our salvation. They probably didn't believe me but let us go on out to the bookstore. I bought a Bible for good measure and Dena got an ice cream cone. I guess I had a young person kind of thing going on, feeling like I was being manipulated and forced but presented with the instructions of it being a self guided tour. So there was a little rebelliousness going on inside of me. Good grief, I had to sit there on a bench pretending I was at a Los Angeles Crusade in the late 1940's and ask God to forgive me of having such a bad attitude there at the Billy Graham Library. When I fell and broke my hip, yes I realize that is usually something old people do, anyway Roy began making up these ridiculous rules for more driving alone...not just on trips but trips to the grocery store etc... I needed to purchase safer shoes...of course I couldn't drive by myself to do such a thing. Besides, I was wearing tennis shoes when I tripped and fell...those are known to be rather reliable and safe type of shoes. I hated to bring up the fact that every bit of medicine I take can cause dizziness, so maybe no more meds, but I took the high road. So if I was still in Houston and we usually were early or on time for church, I would have to play a game with all of this...yes it takes energy but I think it would amuse me and start being late. Hey, at least I couldn't be accused of acting all old and making rules, no I would be more in the childish genre which usually gets on old peoples nerves.

Well, it looks like some rain is coming our way. It has been off and on all day. My weather alert for rain just went off on my phone...another old person kind of thing...keeping up with and all tabs on the weather at all times. I'm still trying to understand weather patterns here and from which way rain and storms comes from. I have concluded they come from every direction.

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