It is frustrating when other people expect one to act a certain way based on things such as clothes, job position, education, family background or religion. These things do do not determine a person’s
actions or provide a necessary clue to them. People can purchase and achieve despite their morals or personality. Families should be an easy
one to disregard. You are born into a family against your will. From puberty, you make choices based on your individuality.
What other family members do has nothing to do with you, and is not a
reflection of you. Although religion is usually passed on in families, most religions have a period of trial where the individual makes his or her own choice as to whether that religion is right for him or her. After that, it becomes their religion. But they do not choose all the
other people in their religion or all the other deeds that people of their
religion have done. One should not assume that just because one or even most people of a certain religion do things, every person of that particular religion, denomination or belief will do the same thing. Categorizing and classifying is a survival instinct that is good to use in certain circumstances, such as when one senses physical danger (there must be more evidence than the color of a person’s skin or the language that they speak, for instance), one is shopping in a market, or doing daily tasks that are required by one’s employment. But we tend to
error in a big way when we us these calculations in a social situation. We exclude and judge people based on the littlest things and we put up walls or make expectations towards others because of the same things. It is more peaceful, loving and just to accept people as they are and not expect them to perform in any way based on any personal characteristics or interests. It is better not to put them in a box.
This is a cynical philosophy, and yet it is based on a truth that we call can learn from life experience. The act of borrowing compromises our integrity because we loan out our reputation and dignity to another person by, first, admitting that we need something enough to promise to return it, thus establishing an attachment to the lender which is potentially unhappy, since there is a good chance, life being what it is, that we will not be able to make good on our promise, thus allowing our reputation and dignity to sink even lower.
Being a lender is the flip side of this situation, but with a twist. A lender is someone who gives, but expects back. He might put a timetable on the return, and he might charge a fee or interest. This inevitably makes the borrower resentful, even if everything is on the up and up. It might be honest on both sides, but the situation itself creates the tension. No matter which side you’re on, the results cannot be good.
We called on the cell phone on our way out of town
Just like we always do, but we caught Bonnie listening
To the nurse say you had pneumonia. They hung up,
And Jackie lost it. Grief set in. Fear set in. Doubt set in.
We talked about what would happen if you died.
What where our responsibilities? The kind of stuff
You never want to think about until it’s too late.
It was a long drive. Not distance, but emotional.
Jackie was miserable. She didn’t know if this was
She started thinking back about the good times;
no more of that. And the horse you had adopted from
the animal shelter, Jackie named him Nugget. Should
we take him, and how? We had already talked about
the aged parrots—they would go with us, too.
We’d need a moving van for all this stuff, but whatever.
Then we got there. You were helpless, drugged out on
Painkiller. Always asleep or on the verge of sleep until
they stopped the drugs. You started talking out of your
Some glimpses of experience, people, but not able to put it all
Together. You could never figure out where you
were. “At the old house”, you’d say, or “the house on Weoka Road”.
Never “hospital” or Baptist East Medical Center.
But each day, with plenty of prayers, in baby steps, you made progress.
With Bonnie, who had never left your side since the accident, never left
The hospital for anything, taking care of every little need of yours. With
Family and friends coming to see you, praying for you, even back in Florida, New York, and California, they were praying.
And the very next day, your mind starts coming back, and you sit in a chair, your first time out of bed. You have gone back and forth with pneumonia, but the staff have been on top of it, doing tests, moving you around, giving you oxygen.
And then you do the unthinkable. You walk down the hall.
You are home now because many others were strong when you could not be strong for yourself. And God was strong for us all.