Wandering the savage garden…

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The Differences in our Realities and Dreams

It’s Super Bowl Sunday! From the perspective of a football fan, I can’t really lose; I live in North Carolina, so if the Panthers win, I win (local team and all that); if the Broncos win, well, I used to live in Indianapolis and always respected Peyton Manning (and I have nothing against Denver). The only way I lose anything in the game is if it’s played terribly, or maybe if someone’s injured badly.

(I love football; I hate when people are injured in the process of playing a game.)

But I caught myself thinking about the excesses of the game this morning.

Mild shift in focus: this is where you’d see those wavy lines during a scene transition…

I’ve been in a lot of cities across the United States. I’m not exactly a world traveler (or a US traveler, really), but I’ve been around a little.

The city I dislike above any other is Las Vegas. New York is a distant second (and only because there are too many people in the parts of it where I’ve had to be – apart from the population pressure, New York is pretty nice.)

It’s not that the people in Las Vegas aren’t kind; it’s the excess you see everywhere. I can’t walk through Caesar’s Palace without thinking of how many hospitals could have been built with the money invested in the building, or how many of the homeless could have been sheltered, or how many children fed or educated (or both).

I know that it’s a personal reaction; Las Vegas is run by businesses, and I don’t know that the builders did not contribute to their societies as well as building these places.

But if it had been me, I think I’d have held off on the ostentation, and made sure there were none in Las Vegas who were sick, hungry, uneducated, or sleeping under the stars without choosing to do so for their own edification.

Wavy screen transition!

The Super Bowl always reminds me of Las Vegas; everything is over the top, and it’s over what is, in the end, a game. The halftime extravaganza is… just too much. (I haven’t been able to appreciate the halftime show in a long time, even when The Who was on it.)

So I caught myself thinking: “If it were me, I’d take the money I’d have spent on a ticket and given it to my local food bank!”

And there’s the problem: would I really have done that? Honestly? For true?

And the answer is “probably not.” I want to think I’d do that. And now, honestly, since I feel kinda bad about it, maybe I will give money to the local food bank as my conscience is instructing me to do.

But the thing that stuck out the most – and actually hurt – was the difference between the narrative in my head – what I saw myself doing, in pride and in how awesome I was – and what I actually do.

A Prayer

Father, I do not believe it is your Will that my desire be fulfilled.

If that fulfillment is Your Will, and I am misunderstanding it, then please give me confidence through correction, and create the circumstances by which your Will might be fulfilled, even in this small thing, because I have no faith in this matter and I will resist its completion with every fiber of my being.

If my assumption and conviction is correct, then I beg of You that You show me some way to endure my own selfishness and pride.

I feel like I am at war with myself, that the edict of the body is a contrast with the edict of the Spirit, and I only desire what is good and right in Your eyes, not mine.

If it is Your Will that I attempt to endure as best I am able, and You do not desire to grant me some relief from my burden, so be it; Your Will supercedes my desires, and I only choose to serve You in any way I am able to.