…And I Feel Fine

On occasion, I enjoy dipping my toes in the pool of conspiracy theories, cryptozoology, alien mythos and end-of-the-world predictions that this interesting time in history have to offer. While I do not support or embrace any of these, I am fascinated by the niche cultures that surround them, and much of the resulting literature.

In case you were unaware, the world was supposed to end (again) yesterday. Bear with me on this one.

“A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head. She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth.”  Revelation 12:1-2

This short yet descriptive passage relays a prophetic message from the Bible, and had many preparing for the end of the world over the course of the last few weeks. This, after so many other failed attempts by humans to predict the end of us, or at least the beginning of the end.

Logically, there is an argument here. Looking to the sky (the heavens), there is a fantastic alignment that took place yesterday. The constellation sat “above” the head of the constellation Virgo (a woman), and contains nine stars. Add to that the 3 planets intermixed and in improbably perfect alignment, and you have yourself a “crown of twelve stars.” The sun upon upon her breast, the moon at her feet, and Jupiter, also in alignment with all of these heavenly bodies, resting near the womb of the “woman.” The similarity between the description in Revelation and this cosmic event are rather striking.

Obviously, the world did not end.

In the spirit of it having been our “last day” on earth, however,  I opted to celebrate life. In a spur of the moment decision, I rounded up my Darling and our handsome Pup, and we traveled nearly two hours south to a park I have long wanted to visit.

I had learned of this place and it’s rare-for-Indiana beauty from a regular customer I serve at work, and have been wanting to check it out for weeks, but made excuse after excuse to put it off.

Lack of desire was not the issue. Instead, I too often adopt the idea that I can just get around to it later, and that there are more important things to do today.

After a beautiful couple of miles with two of my greatest companions, we opted to forgo responsibilities for just one Saturday afternoon, and enjoy every moment. Forgetting the need to rush home to laundry, dishes, homework and groceries, we explored a new town, tasted some delicious coffees at shops where we learned more about how we want to run our own shop someday and enjoyed conversation with locals. We even took a scenic joyride even farther south down into the beautiful Kentucky countryside.

Returning home, we stopped for ice cream at our favorite place in town and finally cozied up to watch the film “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World,” and enjoyed a simple dinner together.

All of this seems so simple, and yet we spend so many weekends bound up with obligations, responsibilities and an overwhelming guilt for spending money outside of our “needs” while we have yet to pay off student loans. Additionally, even when we are not too busy, we decide we are too tired and that it would be best to stay home and rest up for the week to come.

Sometimes though, it is okay – nay, necessary – to let go of all of this and just enjoy life.

This round of the “end of the world” has reminded me of the need to live every single day as if there may be no tomorrow. This is not to say we abandon all responsibilities or that we blow through our savings. This would be foolish. What we should abandon though, is worry about tomorrow, and any guilt about enjoying what opportunity we have right now.

If we are not doing that, then what is the point of living at all?

Let us work hard, live every day to the fullest, and simply trust God with tomorrow.

Much Love & Many Blessings

Brady J L Smith

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The Man in the Mirror

It is astonishing how much can change in a mere nine months.

There have been many events, adventures, hurts and joys that I have neglected to record in writing over that time, and I hope to get around to some of that in the near future, though right now there is something greater on my heart that must be addressed.

Reading over the last few posts that I had written here, I learned some things both about myself and from myself.

Of late, I have spent too many hours (or perhaps not enough) contemplating my increase in restlessness and boredom, failing to find any solution that seems to abate the symptoms in any lasting way.

Of late, I find myself more distant from people who truly matter, as well as more distant from hobbies and activities that I once reveled in, and lacking joy and wonder in all the great opportunities I have in life.

Of late, I find myself questioning much of what I have always believed about love, people, time, the world, and even in some ways, my God.

Of late, I find myself leaving many social interactions regretting words that soared from my mouth so effortlessly, wondering when I allowed myself to become so cynical, doubtful, angry, selfish, jealous and slanderous.

Of late, I am not who I want to be, and I don’t think I am even on a path heading the direction I want to go.

Don’t get me wrong, I love myself and am not here to self-deprecate; rather I am starting to recognize some pretty bad fruit falling to the ground, and that’s not cool.

The posts I was writing nine months ago speak of a man that was increasingly devoting his time to matters that mattered, as well as to a man seeking God.

The words, emotions, actions and lackthereof speak of a man who has been increasingly devoting his time to himself, and seeking himself. This is not who I want to be, nor to whom I am called be.

My life is objectively wonderful and without issue. My circumstances have not been more peaceful, more easygoing or more simple since before I finished high school, and my biggest worry was that I would have to dance at prom.

I have been incredibly happy, and yet I have grown incredibly bored.

To where have I let slip my heart and my time?

Reading the words written long ago by the man in the mirror, I am faced with the recognition that I have been better and that I can be better. I can and must choose to put God and others before myself once again, and give not only of my time but also of my love and my talents.

To blissfully exist in this carefully crafted world I have built for myself is simply not enough. In order to once again begin to live, it is time that I again begin to give.

Much Love & Many Blessings

Brady J L Smith