Saturday, July 2, 2016

July 2: Sacrifice Bound, Dedication, Young and Headstrong

I am a sacrifice bound with cords to the horns of the world's rock altar, waiting for worms.  I take a deep breath, I open my eyes.  Looking, I see there are worms in the horns of the altar like live maggots in amber, there are shells of worms in the rock and moths flapping at my eyes.  A wind from noplace rises.  A sense of the real exults me; the cords loose; I walk on my way.

I think Dillard is talking about dedication in this passage.  We all go through life with blinders on.  Most of us don't think about how our actions may affect our neighbors, town, county, state, country, world, universe.  When I throw away a rotten nectarine, I don't think about the people living in landfills in Mexico, struggling to find food.  If we did think like this, maybe we would dedicate our lives more toward the work of God.  Make every day a sacrifice on an altar.

The problem is that we all make bad choices.  Every day.  I have someone very close to me who has made a bad choice right now.  It's a choice that I think, in the long run, will hurt her quite a bit.  But I can't really explain this to her.  She's young and headstrong.  She doesn't really think much about the future.  It's all about the present.  I'm more of a long-distance thinker.  (That way of thinking has its own pitfalls, as well.  It can tend to paralyze me at times, making it hard to make decisions.)

Bad choices are learning opportunities, I know.  All of the apostles made bad choices at one time or another.  Peter turned his back on Christ.  John ran away when the soldiers arrested Him.  Judas . . . well, you know.  Life isn't so much about the mistakes; it's about what we do with those mistakes, how we move forward.

As I said in an earlier post this week, I try to remember that I am the Christ in people's lives.  That's my job as a Christian.  That should be my goal, my dedication.  To sacrifice my life for the sake of others.  That's what Jesus did.  Ideally, it's what we all should do.  The world would be a much better place if everyone thought and acted like this.  We don't, however.  I don't, for sure, because I'm human.  And selfish.  And flawed.   Just like the young person in my life.

We all make mistakes.  That's the story of humanity.  Yet, we can all change.  Change our minds.   Our lives.  The world.  Make sacrifices.  Walk on our ways.

Saint Marty will try to remember this today.  And tomorrow.  And the next day. 

It's all about love . . .

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