Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Assume The Position

Before I delve deep into a few different areas of thought, I must preface this post.  I would like to make a point that these topics are not directed at someone or something in particular.  They are simply thoughts that I had, and continue to have, so I decided it was time to share them.

I have a question.  What does it mean to be normal?

Sir Webster says it means: according with, constituting, or not deviating from a norm, rule, or principle; conforming to a type, standard, or regular pattern.

Okay, but what is being normal?  Beyond the definition, beyond the everyday burnt out usage of it...what is being normal?  Does it mean to not fall too far away from what everyone else is doing?  In that case, there is a problem!

If we are concerned with being normal, that is not falling too far away from what everyone else is doing, then we are in trouble.  And yes, we all are guilty of being this person, at certain points in our lives.  Wearing certain clothes to try and fit in, talking a certain way in an attempt to be like everyone else, hanging out with certain people so you can be included in the "cool" group, etc.

Why do we get so concerned with being normal?

I believe people become afraid of what others will think of them.  And this isn't just the case for adolescents, it grows on adults as well.  There's always that person trying to get in every picture, the person always wondering what their friends think of them, etc.  The problem is, they become so consumed with how they will be perceived, that they lose the entire meaning of life.

Who freaking cares what car you drive?  Who cares what designer bag/clothes you have?  Who cares how many people you know?  Who cares how many places you have been?  Who cares what you look like?

It's the concept of self.

Consumed in the likeness of ourselves, losing the ability to see the meaning of life, because we are in our own way.  It's simple, and easily solved.  It comes in another definition of 'normal':
occurring naturally

It's that simple!  What is normal, is naturally occurring. 

We all have influences in our lives; family, friends, media, etc.  It is how we use those outlets of knowledge and information, that lead to our successes or our failures in life.  I believe that self consumed people are unmanageable for me.  That doesn't mean that I judge them, or that I was never as they are.  I am just making a point, that I have learned that it is growing extremely hard for me to be able to deal with people who make themselves the focus.  

As I write in my blog, and include my thoughts, with an infinite amount of 'I's used, I wouldn't want the focus to be on me.  I must reiterate that I am presenting thoughts.  I am not trying to say that I am right.  As a matter of fact, I don't believe that everything I say holds truth to it.  The intent is to spark thought amongst yourselves, with the hope that I can offer some alternative insight. 

To conclude my thought on being "normal", I would like to make a point, spiritually.  

I believe that being a Christian is a normal thing.  It is the largest religion in the world, and continues to grow.  But I believe that being a CHRISTIAN is not a "normal" thing.  Being a Christian means to be a follower of Jesus Christ; striving to live as He lived, for all the days of our lives.  It is rare that people exemplify Jesus on a regular basis, therefore making it a step out of the norm.  Point being, instead of getting caught up in what people think, try this on for size; get caught up in what Jesus thinks. 

Maybe it will serve as a  postscript (P.S.), but I had this thought conjured in my mind the other day, and I kind of just ran with it.  It is an idea relating to feelings in a relationship. 

Someone catches your eye, so you go talk to the person.  You find them to be very interesting.  Then you begin to like them.  So you begin hanging out with them on a regular basis.  Then, you begin to really like them, and maybe have some feelings of lust/infatuation/extreme likeness.  So, you increase the rate at which you spend time with the person.  Over a great period of time (which varies from relationship to relationship), you become enthralled with the person, and fall in love.  And they lived happily ever after.

But what happens next?

I can see it with different relationships, mainly between my grandparents and parents, that this is all well and good to a certain extent.  I thoroughly believe that my grandparents are in love.  But why do they always nag each other, and talk trash about each each other?  I feel that they are in love, but they don't necessarily like each other anymore, or as much.  In an ideal and perfect situation, and I only assume how incredibly awesome this is.  The ability to like someone again, after you are in love with them.  When you reach that point of ridiculously comfortability with that person, and you are so settled that nothing could ever rock you two, try liking that person again.  Tell them how much you actually care for them.  Show them how much you actually care for them.  Be there for them at all times.  Display your likeness for them, amidst the extravagant love.  Because that, is what I call perfection in a relationship. 


Friday, October 7, 2011

It is Time...

I presently have many thoughts.  Why do I feel like it is necessary for me to preface a blog about my thoughts, with that statement?

I figure because this entry may turn into another one of my rants.

**Sigh** Here goes nothing..

Okay.  I feel like I have been on a spiritual tear lately.  I feel like I am catching myself doing/saying/thinking bad things, and stopping myself.  I am trying to make myself the best person I can be.  Most importantly, I have been going to God more.  On a moment by moment basis, rather than when I get to it.  It has helped improve my morale, in turn, making it much more enjoyable to go throughout my days.

A lot happened this past weekend.  I went on a road trip with my youth pastor, to a few of the state colleges.  Along the way, I learned many things.

The first thing that I learned, is how to be happy, and free from momentary worries.  In the car on Friday morning, windows down (not too good of an A/C in his car (side note: I sweat the most than anyone I know, and have this ridiculously insane body heat that seems to have a hard time cooling down)), cruising through the state, I realized somethings.

1. Worry
Why do we worry about the little things?  I know we may ask ourselves this on the daily, but seriously!  I wonder this all the time, but as I began to sweat through my shirt on the car ride, I realized I have changed.  The guy that used to get twirked out about being uncomfortable, hot, etc., was the same guy just chilling (figuratively, obviously).  As a result of this discovery about myself, I learned something else.

2. Life
There is more to life than to have to think too deeply in the momentary, small picture.  Finding myself forced into a position where I would formerly be extremely uncomfortable, I was able to embrace life.

TANGENT:  This is my new thing.  A new realization, if you will.  What we have is a gift.  I believe I have already acknowledged that in a previous entry.  But next time you get in your car, roll the windows down, drive the speed limit, feel the wind, and embrace it.  Next time you see something, a flower, or a tree, or even freshly cut grass, take a look, a smell, and embrace it.  How do you embrace life?  Here's kind of how it struck me the other day:  Jesus is God's gift to us.  Naturally, as church has taught us, we are supposed to embrace Him.  But think about it for a second.  When it is a holiday or our birthday, and we may receive do we treat them?  Let's say you open the gift, and you despise it.  So you put it on the shelf to hang.  Not really paying it any mind.  Now, what if you really think it's okay?  So you store it somewhere, and use it every once in a while, right?  And what if you open the gift you have received, and you absolutely LOVE it!?  So you use the item to it's greatest ability, until it runs out.  Now put Jesus in the place of the material gift you may have gotten.  Is He just hanging on your shelf, used every once in a while, or is He being used to his greatest ability?  See, the neat thing that I have learned, is that Jesus is the greatest gift we have received...ever!  He isn't a lame, that just gets tossed into your closet.  He isn't just okay...and gets used periodically.  He isn't used until He runs out either.  He is ever lasting.
As I drove home from school today, I had the thought in my head...Jesus is always there, God is always in us since the beginning of time.  It's just a matter of how you use the gift.

P.S. a few updates...
I have had a week of awesomeness, and have decided that I have added the goal to go to seminary upon completion of undergraduate studies.  It is something that I have thought about in the past, but now I just feel so called to do it.  God has placed it on my heart for a reason.  And with that, I am thoroughly, newly excited for what God has to offer in my life.  Yeah there are going to be times where it may be rough, but knowing He is always there is quite reassuring.