I was reading the Sunday paper, yes, the real Sunday paper, that makes noise, smells funny and gets delivered in a plastic bag, and came across an article that told of an inmate scheduled to be put to death in January 2013. What caught my eye was the fact that the writer took care to mention that the inmate “will die by electrocution, not lethal injection. Condemned inmates in VA can choose between two methods.” How ironic is that? Prison, as I’ve come to understand it, is about the lack of choice. When in prison, you are told what to do, when to do it, how to do it, for how long and often without benefit of explanation. I love watching The Shawshank Redemption. The article reminded me of Red’s character asking “restroom break boss” and the manager telling him, “you don’t need to ask me can you go, just go”. While in the restroom, he reflects, prior to his parole, he “couldn’t squeeze a drop, lessen they say so” and now, he had the freedom to chose when to go. We have no say in how we enter this world. We have no say over the first few years of our lives, and often, we have no say in how we leave this world. But in the world where the right to choose has been stripped from you, a few privileged humans are given a piece of human dignity; they are given the right to choose. As I read the article, I found it ironic that free will, a right endowed to us by The Creator, had been relinquished or removed – depending on the circumstances, and now at the close of their life, the right is restored to them. Does having the right to choose how you will die restore your status in the human race? What, if any benefit is there to this choice and does it really matter what method you choose? Maybe the idea of going out on your own terms justifies the choice, but is it really on your terms? You don’t get to choose the day or hour, so your “choice” somehow gets lost in the sea of choices being made for you. Freedom is rooted in choice and everyday we exercise that freedom consciously and subconsciously. If your freedom of choice is taken away and years and years later is restored to you, are you really mentally capable of making an informed choice? Funny, death row inmates in VA “can choose between two methods” for how they want to die. People who are suffering from terminal illnesses cannot. Those who sit on death row, do so for allegedly stripping another of their freedom of life. From the moment we are born, we are dying. Choosing to speed up the process, the manner in which is happens and letting someone else dictate the time and place doesn’t seem like a very wise choice to me.
Greetings. Since we are in the Season of Giving, this seemed to fit right in. I love music. Not that over syncopated, autotuned, stuttering, stammering mess they play on the radio today (I apologize if I offend lovers of the aforementioned – but c’mon!) but real music. Instruments, singing, you know, Coca-Cola music. Well, listening to Pandora, Billie Holiday’s God Bless the Child came on and of course, a moment was born. You know the words –Them that’s got, shall get. Them that’s not shall lose. So the Bible says, and it still is news. Mama may have. Papa may have. But God bless the Child that’s got his own. That’s got his own. Like me, Ms. Holiday wrote her heart out. An argument with her mother over money led to this song. Seems Ms. Holiday, upon her breakthrough, loaned money to friends but when she fell on hard times, they were no where to be found, so she asked her Mama. Mama said no and then the fight started.
I love how real life and biblical life mirror each other. In Matthew 25: 14-29, it tells the story of a man who gave talents/money to his servants. First servant received 5, second servant received 2, and the third servant received 1, to each according to his own ability. Upon his return, the first servant had doubled his talent and returned with 10. The master was so pleased, he gave him praise and more responsibilities. The second servant too doubled his talent and returned with 4. The master was so pleased, he gave him praise and more responsibilities as well. The third servant, poor paranoid, miserly servant, put his 1k in a hole in the ground. Of course, the master was furious. If nothing else, the servant could have put it in the bank so it could have drawn maybe $1 worth of interest, but instead he didn’t. He was afraid to earn a profit because he knew the master would ask for it, thus the biblical reference — For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.
The little things. Oh how they can have a huge payoff. The first two servants were praised.. Well done, thou good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your Lord. To whom much is given (see what the master gave the servants) much more will be required (see what the servants gave to the master). God wants you to prosper. How are you using what God gave you? Do you burn through His/your resources like a birthday candle? Do you cling to His/your resources because you are afraid of not having enough? Irresponsibility and miserly ways do not equal a Prosperous You. Give and you shall receive. Your gift will return to you in full, overflowing measure, pressed down, shaken together (to make room for more), and running over. This one is a tough lesson, one I struggled with in the past, but I get it. If I’m faithful and responsible over the $100, he will give me back my $100 and more. The more I do with what I have (my talents AND my money, and EVERYTHING God has given me) the more responsibility he will give me. Those odds are better than playing Powerball. As the saying goes, you can’t beat God’s giving. Don’t be like the third servant and miss out on blessings and prosperity. Sin and a shame to let them go to waste.
Always find time… To Relax. Get Comfortable. Get Mended.
Another text to blog moment
The next few moments will be of moments gone by. I wrote and sent them out to a few tailors via text, so for those of you who weren’t fortunate enough to receive it the first time, as Shalimar sings, Second time around.. and I’ll make it better than the first time.
Do you have a confidant? You know, that TV BFF, the one living, breathing, upright walking person in this world, not of it, that you tell ANY and EVERYthing to. One who you can confess all your secrets and sins and know there will be no condemning surprise or judgment when you do? Do you have such a person, and I’m not talking about Jesus either. Oddly enough, I think the Catholics have the right idea. They go into the little closet and confess all their secrets and sins to another that is neither surprised nor judgmental of the exposed secrets and sins. Of course no man, except Jesus, can absolve us of our sins, but its nice to know that when you must confess to another, there will be no judgment, disapproving looks, etc. Are you someone’s confidant? Do you have a confidant? If you don’t you need to get one. Keeping secrets and sins to yourself is akin to a toothache, constipation and kidney stones. All get worse with time and you wont feel better until it all comes out, but you need the right tool and person for the job. Confidants can help you get rid of your emotional toothaches, constipation and kidney stones. All you have to do is say Ahhhhhhh 🙂
Find a way… To Relax. Get Comfortable. Get Mended.