Search

The Written Word

The Creative Meanderings of S. Brown

Real Life Parables: Chosen Sight

It was a small glimpse into someone else’s life, but it came back later to keep me from sleep.

I passed by them in the middle of a crowded street, in the middle of the city center. Surrounded by hundreds of people and dozens of shops and delights their little drama played out. He caught my eye first. He was a tall man in a nice suit and wearing sun glasses. It was a cold, dreary day, in a country that rained every day; I wondered at his choice of eyewear until I noticed the thin cane held up in front of him.
“Look at what you did! ” he cried. I thought the suggestion ironic.

The young girl still had her cell phone to her ear and stared with a mix of horror and shock at the cane in his hand. One half of it dangled down. It hung in the air between them as evidence of her folly.
“I… I didn’t see it… ” she winced as she said the words. It was her only defense, but to say such a thing to a blind man sounded to all ears, even to her own, an unworthy excuse. But it was all she had.
His brows furrowed as he shook the destroyed cane in his hand.
“You people see what you choose to see!”

She stood still, her phone still on her ear and her brain completely stuck for what to say.
It was all I heard of their drama. I walked right by them, and felt sorry for them both. What can the girl do? I thought. Perhaps it was a genuine mistake on her part. Perhaps if he weren’t blind, it would have been a passing accident that no one would’ve thought much of.  But he was blind, and she had destroyed something he desperately needed.  I pondered it over as I walked the next few paces, but the dramatic meeting soon melted away in the midst of my own worries and responsibilities.

It was three days later before I thought of them again. I was just about to fall asleep, when it happened. There was nothing I could do about it. Just as vivid as when I had walked past them, the scene fled to the forefront of my thoughts and hit me across the face. His words stung and it caught me by surprise: “You people see what you choose to see”

A simple phrase that rung truer than perhaps even he had realized.

Why? I thought to myself, do people pray for God to give them eyes to see?
We already see what’s happening in the world, it’s not as though it’s hidden. It’s right there. If it were any closer we’d trip over it, and sometimes we do, and more than walking sticks get broken. And it’s not as though we don’t understand how to help anyone. What do we think the example of Christ was there to be an example of?

“You people see what you chose to see.”

We’re no different than the girl on her phone.
There’s nothing wrong with our vision, the problem is what our heart is focused on. We’ve chosen not to see. We’ve chosen to look away when something comes that makes us uncomfortable or seems too complicated or is just too much of a hassle to dirty our hands with. We’d much rather prattle away about all the things we don’t like than chose to see what’s right before our eyes. We’ve chosen not to see the awkward guy who never says the right thing but tries so hard because he’s desperate to have a friend. We’ve chosen not to see the young girl with head hung low and hair in her face to cover the bruises she received. We’ve chosen not to see the homeless woman sitting by the street, cup held out in hand to ask for a bit of change. We’ve chosen not to see face on the news of a little boy with blood on his face and tears in his eyes for the home that he just lost. We’ve chosen not to see the bodies wash upon the shore reaching a different peace than the one they’d prayed for. We’ve chosen not to see the children forced to fight wars their parents died trying to cease.
We’ve chosen.
We have chosen our own blindness because the truth is we don’t care enough to look at it. We knowingly walk our own way, talking and talking and saying nothing at all as we trip over the blind and the hurting and the dying. And one day, when we step too harshly and accountability is demanded, and the blind man cries out against us, our excuses will be the very words that incriminate us.

We people choose what we want to see. We don’t need to keep asking God for eyes to see the world the way He does, we need to chose to care.

Thoughts on Friendship 

Our bonds and ties to each other are quite fragile things. One mistake in a friendship can cause a person to lose heart, feel rejected, or desire the relationship to end, but why?  

Is it because we aren’t getting what we want out of the friendship?  Is it because we truly believe that person couldn’t possibly understand what we feel?  Is it because we think we deserve to have people who care about us?  Is it because we want a friend who puts us first?  Is it because we’re really this completely and utterly selfish?


A true friendship only works when two people dare to love and care for each other at the risk of their own personal comfort and pleasure.  


If you back out of a friendship just because the other person changes in a way you don’t like, you’re not a friend; you’re a sponge.  

If you decide one day that you don’t need a person any more, they were never your friend; they were your tool to use.  

If you never let anyone close enough to hurt you, it’s impossible to be a friend; you’ll just have nice acquaintances.

If you expect a friendship to stay exactly the same for all time, you’re friendship will die and you’ll be left alone.


It’s this last one I see most often misunderstood in our society.  “You’re not the person I remember” gets thrown around as an excuse to end all kinds of relationships, but let me put it to you this way: In order for a friendship to stay exactly the same as when it first started, both people must stay exactly the same.  And anyone who remains exactly the same their entire life is a person who has stopped learning.  And a person who has stopped learning is to be pitied above all else because they can no longer understand a grand part of what it means to be alive.  For to live is to learn, to learn is to grow, to grow is to change.  


To expect a person to be the same as you remembered them when you first met is the greatest form of selfishness there is.   If a person is not the same as when you first met them, great!  That means they are struggling through life and learning how to make sense of it all.  Instead of expecting them to stay the same for you, become the friend you desire to have: someone who never leaves them no matter what, someone who desires to know what they think and what they’re going through, someone who has chosen to love them, someone who is patient, and someone who endures it when they push you away and try to hurt you because, in the end, it’s not the friendship that is most important, it’s the person on the other side of the friendship who is most important. 

When the Soul is Downtrodden 

The heart feels things that cannot be spoken.

The mind perceives what makes me heartbroken.

The body feels pain when the Soul is Downtrodden.

Yet the weight of the world was laid upon one person.

My heart,  my soul,  my mind,  my strength,

Are cradled in Mercy and made whole under Grace.

 

Note:  Sometimes life is hard and we have deep hurt inside.   Those are times we need to remember the Lord and look to Him for help.  🙂

The Modern Woman

image

She is more precious than jewels but we think jewels make us beautiful.
She is trusted by one man but we think men should serve us.
She wishes no harm to come to her husband; we just wanna have fun outside of marriage.
She works with willing hands to provide for her household;  we aren’t satisfied with less but complain when there’s more.
She plants a vineyard;  we get drunk and party at the bars to celebrate our freedom.
She dresses herself with strength;  we barely dress at all.
She makes her arms strong with heavy labor,  we obsess over our bodies to be sexually attractive. 
She sacrifices sleep to make a profit,  we sacrifice our self respect to make one of our own.
She reaches her hands to the poor and helps the needy;  we’ve become needy lovers and poor,  back stabbing friends.
She’s not afraid of the cold;  were so busy playing it cool we forgot who we really were.
She is blessed with fine clothing and proper dress; we covet the ways of Hollywood and movie stars.
Her husband is know amongst those with position; we’ve emasculated our men to show them who’s boss.
She makes and sells clothes; we make like we have rights and sell away our souls.
Strength and dignity are her clothing; we changed our outfit to aggression and pride.
She laughs at the times to come; we laugh when he’s crude and talks a bit dirty.
She looks well in the eyes of her household;  we left the household to the babysitter and said we’d take a “real”  job.
Her children rise and call her blessed;  we killed ours before they were born.
Her husband praises her;  we divorced him because we didn’t feel in love anymore.
The modern woman has come so far from where womanhood began.  
She surpassed herself in her humanity.  Charm is her weapon and vanity her friend.
But the woman who fears the Lord understands….
“Give them the fruit of their labor”,  He says with tears in His eyes.  “Her works condemned her and led her to the gates of hell.”

Would You?

image

If I sold a book, would you read it?
If I made you a poem, would you care?
If I wept as I sang
For all that you meant
Would it settle on your ears
or on deaf ones?
If I traveled the oceans,  would you be there?
If I traversed o’er mountains,  would you care?
If my feet bled from walking
Just to tell you I love you
Would it touch your heart,
Or don’t you have one?
If I spoke all my secrets,  would you listen?
If I told you all answers,  would you care?
If my throat closed from speaking
All the blessings of heaven
Would it lead you to peace,
Or would you hate me?
If I wept for your soul,  would it matter?
If I prayed for salvation,  would you care?
If I bled and I died,
Just to keep you from hell,
Would you take what I offered,
Or reject me?

Would You?

Bitter/Sweet

image

The bitter sweet of me
Often leaves a painful aftertaste
I spit the dregs of the moment out
and wonder what it gave me.
The honey of truth still lingers on my tongue,
But not everyone appreciates it’s taste
And those who can’t stomach it
Stand back and Spit their bile in my face
Like backwash in a bottle of water,
I fight hard to drink life down
Why can’t I just keep my mouth shut?
But perhaps it’s the cup I’m not supposed to pass up
It’s the one I’m meant to drink,
But it’s bitter sweet,
Oh so bitter sweet
So bitter when tasteless becomes most loved
So sweet when true Love says well done
So bitter when you begin to understand
The world will blame you for their mistakes
For I have come to learn
You can offer to others the sweetest of drinks
But those who wait til it’s too late
Gulp down a sour reality.
But for those who taste and see….
The best sweetness is yet to come. 

Another Man’s Fantasy

image

My life is a series of contradictions

Lost directions and plans that never get written

Surrounded by chaos

As troublesome as the seas

On a night when tempests rage at their peak

I try to live somewhere between

The rising Crest of the waves

And the point at which it breaks upon the water below

Try as I might

I drown in the white water and wonder

Will I ever truly live as I did before,

When life was young and adventures sweet?

The world so promising back then

I drown

I rise

I drown

I rise

Is the world still full of dreams that I can attain?

Or are we all just living another man’s fantasy,

Trying desperately to conform

To the picture he draws out for us

The image he wishes to see?

Real Life Parables: Facebook Birthdays

“Why isn’t he deleted?”
Amanda watched the Facebook page on her phone light up and her face dropped into a frown.
The face looking up at her from the birthday page was an older man’s face with grey hair.   The funny little smirk on his face complimented his rosy cheeks and white beard, making him look a bit like Santa clause.
She read the words below his name: 65 Today.
Amanda sighed,  yes,  she thought,  he would have been.   She passed her fingers through her brown wavy hair and felt her stomach tighten into a knot.
She missed him.
She put the phone down and memories flooded her mind.   As soon as the memory in her head disappeared another would take its place.  There was the time he had taken the family to the petting zoo and rattle snake farm with the giant pigs,  creepy emu and skinny donkey that followed them around.   Then that time he brought cricket suckers and wanted everyone to try them.  Or what about the time he’d bought them didgeridoos for Christmas.  Before she knew it she was smiling.   What a crazy guy,  she laughed to herself.
But the best times were the times they had spent cooking.   She had probably spent more hours with him in her grandfather’s kitchen than any where else.   Amanda closed her eyes.   It was like stepping into the past for a moment.  In her minds eye,  everything was as it had been when she was still young.  The oven that was built into the wall.   The small counter space.   The yellowed tiles on the floor.  The huge wooden table just outside the kitchen.   The sliding glass doors that led to the back patio and the grill waiting to be used.   And most of all,  her uncle standing in the kitchen explaining to her what new recipe they would attempt that day and what her mission would be to help it happen.
Amanda sighed again,  but this time it was the deep sigh of someone who both feels joy and pain at the same time.   Joy for the blessing those moments with her uncle had been,  and pain because the world had lost such a unique person.
He had been an inspiration to her in so many ways.  He had taught her how to take risks; taught her that life was diverse, and it was most beautiful when people could accept that diversity and both learn to respect others and learn to be themselves at the same time.
She had once fumbled through her words to tell him this.   She closed her eyes tightly and tried to keep this memory away,  but found that it had embedded itself deep within.
He lay there on his bed,  waiting,  barely able to move around.   He waited for her to speak.   The unspoken words hung in the air like a darkness that refused to dissapate: this would be the last conversation they would ever have.   Her words just hadn’t been right.  She still didn’t know how she could have explained all that he had done for her.   How do you tell a man who is dying how much his life had meant to you?   How?  How?
Perhaps she would never know until she herself lay somewhere dying.   That gave her a sudden horrifying thought: who would be struggling to form their last words to her as she lay there breathing her last breaths of life?
I will strive,  she thought,  I will strive,  God,  to impact someone else’s life the way his life had impacted mine. 
She picked her phone off the table and smirked back her uncles photo.   “Happy birthday you crazy old man” she said aloud.   “See you next year.”

The Land of No Contrast

image

Where the light meets the dark

Is a land of no contrast

What once had been stark

Gets blended to grey

But when Day comes we’ll know

What the night truly was

In the sunlight well see all the damage was done,

In the shades of no color where no man is wrong

In the portrait of time

Our discernment gets faded

Where the brightness is dimness

And the shadows the in between

The flaws and mistakes in comparison  then,

Look a masterpiece of all humanity

But when  the Day comes we’ll see the picture remaining

All our shadows and half-light

Can’t save us from obscurity

Our colorless strokes and subjective “creativity”

Turn rights into wrongs

And nothing is as it seems

But when the Day comes we’ll see the image remaining

Mistakes we thought hidden in the faded in between

Become the lifeless image of a soul that needs redeemed

Where the light meets the dark is the hope of the dying

But the hope of the living is the Daylight that’s breaking

In its rays nothing hidden

In its rays all revealed

And the land of no contrast is silenced and stilled

The half lights the shadows the night and the grey

Relinquish their title of colorless obscurity

To the color and brilliance of victorious Day!

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑