Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Like Dog, Like God

Have you ever noticed how we as humans tend to affix human qualities, thoughts and words into and onto non-human things? It's called anthropomorphizing. We do it all the time. I know I do. I mean, if you've read here before you've no doubt noticed that I try to interject my thoughts into various animals and birds all the time. There's nothing wrong with it. In fact, it's really kind of fun! The Far Side is the epitome of anthropomorphizing and, in my ever humble opinion, is fantastic! One of my faves.

Why do you think dog is a man's best friend? Because you can pretend your dog is thinking ANY thing you want him/her to be thinking. If your real best friend sat in your passenger seat and never spoke a word and slobbered on your window would he/she still be your best friend? Just because they look at you in a way you think you can interpret?? How many times do you hear someone say, "Awww, he just loves me! Look at him, he's thinking 'what a great person my owner is.'"? Or something similar. But what if the dog is really thinking in dog--not human--and it goes something like this: "big round eyes, wag tail, get better food." Or what if, when a robin sits atop a tree on a sunshiny morning chirping out it's delightful melody, it's not really celebrating the fact that it's a bright, cheery morning, but instead is sounding off to the other birds in the neighborhood..."hey you schmucks! Wake up, these worms aren't gonna last all day!" We have no idea, so we fill in the blanks with our own, human words and sentiments. And usually in our own language, because I don't know about you, but I just can't imagine cows speaking French.

Unfortunately, we do the same thing with God. God is not merely a super human with super human powers. No, He is GOD and even though we are created in His image, we are not God. Not even close. Which one of us is everywhere right now? Which one of us can create something from nothing? Which one of us can even fathom that? We say things like, "God must be angry" or "that makes God very sad", which may or may not be true in any given circumstance, but we are thinking it in human terms because we're human. But God's sad or glad or angry are not the same as our human versions of those things. In the same way that we cannot be everywhere at once, we cannot have all these emotions at once. In the same way God can be (and is) everywhere at once, He can have all these emotions at once. We affix our limited suppositions on The God that is humanly unknowable and in the process we make Him very weak and small. Like ourselves. I know I do. And He loves me anyway!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Geography and Photography

Let me try to explain to you where I am five days a week. Ready? Okay, play along with me. Hold out your right hand like you did in elementary school when you were supposed to trace it with your pencil to make a turkey at Thanksgiving time. Now fold all your four fingers in half and pretend like your thumb is twice as thick as it is. Got it? Your hand now looks like the state of Washington. No really, it does! See that space between your thumb and your index finger? That body of water is called Puget (pronounced pew-jet) Sound. The island I have the privilege to deliver to in my little brown truck is located right there in that sound. If your hand were actually land, the island is attached (with a bridge) about half way up your bent index finger. It has some amazing scenery. Here's just a sample...isn't springtime great??

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Let Go

Today was my little girl's birthday, but the thing is, she's not a little girl anymore. It's official. At least according to the the law. Today she became an adult. It's a weird feeling for me. I mean, I'M not even an adult yet, what is she doing becoming one??

I know that my children are really not mine, they're gifts from God, given to me for a time. Great gifts they are too, but it's that time thing that gets me. Every moment of your life as a parent, whether you know it or not, you're growing closer to your children. After all, love will do that to you. You give it away, you give it away, and you give it away some more. All the while those little gifts we call children are taking it in, taking it in, taking it in and learning how to give it back simply by your example. That's the way love is; it's a simultaneous giving and taking that causes you to grow closer to each other. There's no way around it. It's the way God designed it. That's what makes me wonder about people who say they know God and yet they don't love Him. Makes me wonder if they know him at all. But that's a tangent for another day. While growing closer to my daughter was the most desired as well as a most fulfilling thing for me and her, somewhere in the midst of that God wanted me to be learning how to let go.

I started learning how when she was 11 years old. That night in the summer when I crawled up on her bed at night like I always did. It was bed time. It was story time. It was kiss me goodnight time. Only on this night it was 'your mom and I are getting a divorce' time. Suddenly I had knowingly caused deep hurt in my little girl's heart. I didn't want to let go, but in that moment everything that was normal wasn't normal anymore. After I spoke that sentence and the sobbing began I knew her dreams had been shattered as much, if not more than mine had. It was the first step of letting go.

When she backed out the driveway on her 16th birthday with her two little brothers in the car and those three little hands waved goodbye, I knew that I'd be seeing precious little of that little precious girl in the days past that one. They lived eight miles away at the time, and had no other reason to come this way, but to 'visit' me. Her life was busy. She has always been an industrious student; always a straight 'A' girl and that takes time. Time and discipline. She also has always been a girl with a big circle of friends because she's a always been a good friend. More time taken. She is athletic and modestly so. While it was never her greatest passion, she would never scrimp on the training, which takes? You guessed it...time. As her dad I would never want her not to have any of these pursuits as they are all excellent and are worthy of her character, but it would mean that she would be a busy girl...with a car. Step two of letting go.

So tonight, I must surmise, is step three. Tonight she is a legal adult and harsh as it may sound, I will hold my tongue and give advice only when it is asked for. I will interject when I am asked and I will treat her as my adult daughter--with values and opinions different than my own. I am no less in love with this girl that has become a woman than I have ever, ever been. She will however, never cease to be my little girl.

Of that one thing I will never let go.

Friday, April 18, 2008

A couple of things...

First of all, look at this photo closely (click on it to enlarge). On the right hand side, about halfway up, you will see that I am sometimes a very lucky photo taker...'s a hawk that must have suddenly noticed me (or my big brown truck) and it hit it's brakes midflight, midair. Cool huh??

Last, and very certainly not least. When I wake up in the morning I will be the proud dad of a 21-year-old daughter. WHOA!! to the Nth degree!!!!!

Monday, April 14, 2008

I find it amazing how many amazing things there are. For example this little bird. Not so much the bird, but it's choice of a perch. Notice that the other stems of grass are pretty much straight up and down and yet the one it is resting on (and swaying, I might add) is bent at a somewhat parallel angle to the ground. Now, at first glance, and maybe even at second, it would seem like an insignificant detail, but I stopped and took this picture and as soon as I did the bird flew away and the blade of grass sprung up tall and straight as if nothing had ever happened. How does a bird flying along at a fairly healthy clip, in full grip of the wind, maneuver itself to a landing on an upward stalk of green grass? How does it know it's a strong and trustable piece of grass on not a limp, dying one? Or why not simply land on the ground? Do you suppose even the birds of the air have an inherent faith that they are being watched over?

These are the questions of the little boy left in me.

His eye is on the sparrow and I know He's watching me.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Hard Questions

I'd like to make a sheep out of oak......wooden ewe?

I'd like to make an alphabet out of birch.....wooden 'u'?

I'd like to know what happens when you fall into a bin of toothpicks....wood in you?

I'd like to know where you can study forestry in college.....wooden U?

I'd like to know what would happen if you replaced smokeless tobacco with bark....wooden chew?

I'd like to make a pair of slippers out of alder....wooden shoe?

I'd like to know how I got to be this way....wouldn't you?

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Ned The Threedle

There once was a boy named Ned. Ned lived in a place called Toodle. In Toodle everyone owned a poodle. One day Ned's poodle died so he moved to Threed. When you live in Threed you're called a Threedle. Since Ned was a Threedle Ned learned how to thread a needle. Now Ned the Threedle could thread the needle like no other Threedle could. Oh sure, other Threedles were good at threading needles but none as good as Ned. No needle ever threaded was threaded better than a needle that Ned had threaded. No no no. Ned the Threedle could thread a needle like no other Threedle needle threader. So if you're ever in Threed and you need a Threedle to thread your needle call Ned the Threedle cuz no one ever threaded a better needle than Ned did.

So what does this have to do with ANYthing? Nothing. Absolutely Nothing. Sometimes I just get bored and make up lame stuff. This is exhibit 'A'.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

So tell me...

...why aren't you telling me what you think? I know...yes, I KNOW that there are a select few (very few) of you who read this here little thing called a blog and don't comment--it's called lurking, people. If you did this in public you'd be called 'rude', but this is cyberspace and evidently every thing is permitted. However, tonight I am calling you to task. I want to know why you're so quiet. Now, don't get me wrong, I like quiet and all, but you should not simply lurk forever, one might question your upbringing.

Here's the assignment: in one sentence or more tell me what prevents you from putting that little floating thought that you're thinking into writing here. Simple huh?

I'm waiting...

(those of you that normally comment are free to chime in and make your astute observations as normal, of course!