Monday, April 07, 2014

Gamer Gentility

The other day I was working at a church for a bit.  And the place was active.  Bible Study was happening, as well as making kits for feeding people that needed food.  Most people would look at it, and be impressed with the ability of a church to gather that many people on a weeknight to do things that a church does.  It made me smile.  I left in a good mood, and a little earlier than I expected, and I drove to a game store that I had heard about.  I walked in and then my attitude changed.
No one said hello.  No one seemed to notice I was there.  But there was no where that I felt so alive that day.  There was a palpable energy going on in the store.  It was large for a game store, but it would be tiny for a church.  A large desk commanded the center of the room, and there things were being bought quickly.  Tables were laid out.  One one a group of 4 or 5 played one game.  On another there were three sets of a card game being played.  Another groups were painting pieces to be used in the future.  Kids were playing with kids.  Kids were playing with adults.  People were teaching and learning.  Mothers looked on in disbelief as their teens did something beyond their comprehension.  Passions were being passed on from one person to another.  And outside of that, there was a not a group that they all fit in, other than they liked to play games.
When is the last time you walked in to a group of 30 people and felt all of them passionate about something in the church?  When were you astounded by the energy in a room of a church.  Not for a church but against anything?
We are supposed to be that passionate.  We are supposed to have something that bowls us over.  How do we get the energy of a bunch of nerds?  How do we surpass that?

Monday, January 06, 2014

Tiny Treasures

I love my son dearly, and he is now at the stage where he can manipulate his world in a way he never could before.  He can grab and run with things long before Tiff or I know he has them at times.  And when he decides to put something somewhere, you are never quite sure where it will end up.  There is a remote that he hid ages ago that we have no idea where it is.  But on principle I won't buy another one.  
That being said, he is now in the habit of moving small things and hiding them places.  So you check your shoes for cars, trains, nuts, locks, or whatever small thing he has found and decided that a left shoe is the perfect safe for its keeping.  He favors Tiff right now, so she tends to get more of the tiny treasures.  I will admit it would be easy to find one and get angry, doesn't he know that is not where a toy car goes?  It also helps that as far as I know, neither one of us has been hurt, so that might change the equation drastically.  
I will more readily admit that when I checked my University of Texas Crocs (they may be ugly as sin, but I get to walk on a cloud all day) and found a little pad lock that had been placed in the heel, my heart melted.  You see, Tiff and Thomas left Christmas Day to see her sister who had just had her third son.  It will be January 10th before I see them again.  I left before they got back.  But I found this little lock  around January 1st or 2nd.  Something smaller than my thumb, gleaming out of the shadows of this horrendous footwear had warmed my heart.  I will not begin to try to say why it was there, but I know immediately it made me think of my son, and the love I have for him.  It also made me think of the love he has for me.  It has made me smile more than the remembrances of phone calls we have had.  I think because it was unexpected.  It is easy to call and expect to hear his voice.  It is also easy to call and be told, "He does not want to talk to you today." by Tiffany.  The latter is saddening to the Nth degree.  But the unexpected.  It changed what was to be.
I could have just shaken my shoe without looking at it, and been on my way without looking at the ground.  I could have quickly bemoaned my son due to his carelessness with other people's stuff.  I could have called him and asked why he put it there.  But I did not.  I took time to think of him, and his love, and my love.  That was a much better thing to do.  
It also made me think of how to show up unexpectedly in the lives of others.  How can I show a glimmer of light in their ugly shoe that they only wear when they need to feel comfort?  How can I be a remembrance of something wonderful even when so far away?  How can I use mundane things for amazing purposes?
It also made me wonder, how often do others try to show up in my life, and I am too busy to be concerned about it.  How often have I shaken my shoes, scared their was a bug and missed the moment?  How often has than other person been God tempting me to a new understanding?