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Answers

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Answers

I was reading an excerpt from a book by #LaurenceFreeman this past week. One sentence has stuck with me; “Answers are not what we need. What we need are questions which cannot be answered.” I read and reread this selection many times.

We live in a world, perhaps humanity is made this way by our cultures and societies, in which answers are what we seek and find. While certainly, we would want answers, conclusions, discoveries, of the sort which would end poverty, crime, diseases, however, the most important answers are the ones which cannot be answered.

This is a paradox. Answers comfort us, direct us, help us find our way in the world. However, answers do not lead us to the most important of all truths. God, for example, is by definition, one who cannot be fully and completely known. The deeper we dig to find knowledge of God the more questions we find. It is the same with our existence, our purpose our place in the universe.

Silence as the answer to life’s biggest questions. Many say if you cannot or will not look for the answer then why ask the question? It is when we are able to be still and silent in our souls with the greatest questions unanswered that we find the path of wisdom.

blessings,
@BrianLoging
thewannabesaint.com

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Go

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Go

This morning, on my way to work, I was stopped at a traffic light. There were two vehicles ahead of me and one, after stopping, turned right and the other one moved up. He was turning right also and was waiting for a break in the traffic to make his move. He watched and waited, watched and waited. He was so intent on finding a moment when he could go that he didn’t notice the light turned green and he could proceed anytime he wanted to. Finally, he looked up, saw the green and took off.

On the rest of my drive to work, I thought about the driver and life. Many times we are looking for signs, indicators, epiphanies to tell us when to go, what direction to take, the path to follow. Paradoxically we can be so intent on a special signal we miss the ordinary, everyday sign posts which are right in front of us.

Perhaps it is a good word from a friend, a scripture read, a persistent thought, the desire itself. Each of these could be the “Go!” we’ve been looking for and missed because it wasn’t where we thought we’d see, sense it.

blessings,
@BrianLoging (Twitter)
thewannabesaint.com

Confusion

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Confusion

Earlier today I was trying to get the mowing done before a storm front moved through our area. I saw Beth come outside with our Siberian Husky, Trooper and waved at her. My attention went back to the mowing and when I looked up again she had Trooper by the collar with one hand and was shooing two brown dogs with the other. I quickly disengaged the blades and drove down the hill in our backyard to help.

The two dogs didn’t seem aggressive just curious but Trooper was also curious and you’re never sure what’s going to happen when unfamiliar dogs get too near each other. I jumped off the mower and had the brown dog’s attention now and Beth was able to get ours inside. I clapped my hands, marched toward the dogs, while yelling; “Go home! Now!” The younger of the two dogs began trotting home but the older one looked at me and wasn’t intimidated. Once I noticed Beth and Trooper inside I made my way back to the mower and headed again to the backyard. The older dog followed. I tried yelling again. It used the bathroom and continued to go wherever I drove and mowed. Finally, I finished mowing and told it to; “Please! Go home!” and thankfully, it did.

I don’t know whose dog exactly it was but I think it confused me with its owner. It never growled nor did its hair stand up, it just wanted to be loved, petted, played with? I’m not sure what it wanted which makes me confused as well.

Life is never predictable. We get confused and this makes us frustrated and desperate. We follow what seems familiar only to find ourselves in a strange place with no sense of direction. Hopefully, eventually, someone or something will help us find our way.

blessings,
@BrianLoging (Twitter)
thewannabesaint.com

Destination

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Destination

I heard a business investor say today that; “Right choices bring the wrong results and wrong choices bring the right results all the time when it comes to investing your money.” Luckily, I don’t have enough money to worry about whether or not this is true but it did cause me to think about the consequences of our decisions.

One of the core principles I try to give to the men I work with is that; “Choice is destiny. What we do today determines who we will be tomorrow.” I believe this to be true but I am also old enough to know life is never predictable and the unexpected could be around the corner ready to smack you!

As I thought about this gentleman’s words today I realized they were indeed factual. Making bad decisions could lead to something unexpectedly joyful but the odds are long. Also, we make good decisions, not just because they will lead us to something better, but because of who we are in the deepest part. We certainly hope our lives will be blessed by choosing fidelity to ourselves and those we love but no matter our destiny. We choose to be good because we know it is the better way.

blessings,
@BrianLoging (Twitter)
thewannabesaint.com

Where We Look

Where We Look

The last two mornings, as I’ve taken the dog outside for some personal time, there has been a beautiful Robin (https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/American_Robin/id) looking for food. When I’ve spotted the bird I become as still as possible and see how close it’ll get near me.  My breathing slows, my movement stagnant, my attention heightened as I watch it hop around looking for breakfast. The rain we had over the weekend has softened the ground and it isn’t long before it’s meal is plucked up from the ground and the bird flies away. I exhale and the world around me comes alive again. The Robin had been my sole focus and until it leaves, by choice or being frightened, and my awareness of the world was dependent on it.

Wisdom tells us that where we place our focus, set our awareness, is life. Where we look, the direction we face is ultimately the direction of our journey. If we only look back we can never go forward. If we’re unfocused, trying to see all directions, we won’t be able to choose a fixed point and begin to travel toward it. Though paradoxical, stillness is the key to knowing and navigating this path called life.

blessings,
BrianLoging (Twitter)
thewannabesaint.com

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Steady as We Go

A great video. Two friends who found each other on this unpredictable road of life.

When I first watched this video I couldn’t help but be mesmerized by the squirrel. Frantic, hyper, always on the move, never slowing down, just viewing it wore me out. I watched the rodent run circles on its caretaker’s torso but the man was steady with his walking, gentle with his petting and their relationship was positively symbiotic.

I reflected on times and seasons when I was anxious, jumpy, antsy, on edge but friends and loved ones were steady, still and grounded. They brought an assurance to me by their unwavering ways that; “all shall be well.”

Life can injure us. It can make us uncertain of our chosen path. We are indeed blessed if, in our unsettledness, we have companions on the journey who keep us safe, connected and moving in the right direction.

blessings,
@BrianLoging (Twitter)
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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This Lane Only

There’s something about visiting a town for the first time and understanding their traffic patterns. This morning I traveled to Tullahoma, TN for a legislative bruncheon at the National Guard Armory.  It was an opportunity for legislators to inform the audience of mental health and family wellness advocates about their progress over the last year and their plans for 2016. It wasn’t non-stop fun but it was worth the hour and half trip.

On the way home I was approaching a traffic light while driving on a two-way highway. Almost to the intersection I noticed only one lane went the way I needed to go. The GPS showed me where to proceed but not how. I was surrounded by traffic, did not see any signs which would offer help, and had to wait and see what direction was in my future. Fortunately, the lane to my right was a turn only and the vehicles in my lane were able to go straight and I made it home safely without any further anxious moments.

As I proceeded through the intersection I thought about all the times we needlessly worry about things which are out of our control. Sometimes life takes us in one direction or in another and we’re just along for the ride. We may fight it, try to control, coerce and cajole it but in the end; we go with the flow because we don’t have a choice. There are times when it doesn’t go well for us and others it turns out ok, maybe even better.

The key to contentment is allowing life to unfold in front of us and trusting the path maker to take us home.

blessings,
@BrianLoging (Twitter)
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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Going in Circles

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Yesterday evening,  the sun was setting as Beth and I we’re covering plants in preparation for a heavy frost. As we finished up our outside work, I spotted an inch worm slowly making its way around the rim of a flower pot. I watched him stretch forward and pull the rest of his body up and repeat the process. I wondered where it was going? It was a lot of effort to just go in a circle. Sooner or later it would need to change direction if it was ever going to get anywhere.

I then begin to think about my journey and the journey of others I’ve known. There are paths we choose to take that lead us no where. Dreams and what we hope for don’t happen. Plans for our life go awry and yet stubbornly we cling to our desires trying in vain to control, coerce, make life fit our vision. We try and fail, using great effort and passion but never getting anywhere.

The choice becomes do we keep going in circles or decide to change direction? Can we let go of what we want our life to be, take a new path trusting it will lead us to the life we need?

blessings,
@BrianLoging (Twitter)
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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Lost & Finding the Way

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My wife and I went “shed hunting” this morning. We enjoy our little farm house but are in desperate need of some extra storage space. Our neighbors have a nice wooden building behind their home and suggested we go meet the man who built it. His name is Isaac, an Amish gentleman, who owns a sawmill, makes furniture and builds sheds of all shapes and sizes. They gave us directions and we got up early, on a Saturday!, to go see if he had what we’re looking for.

The directions we received from our neighbor were not “GPS quality.” They mostly consisted of statements such as; “When you get here, turn left. When you see this, turn right. It’s a ways down this road. Look for a white house. Just keep driving until you find it.” We did our best to follow the instructions but ended up lost.

Pulling into a gas station, the Mrs. went inside to ask for help and I tried to get a cellphone signal in the back hills of Tennessee to no avail. Beth had more luck and we recovered our bearings. We had missed a turn about ten miles back and when we retraced our route we figured out why. One of the; “When you see this…” part of the directions was spying a small sign for a local business that was mostly hidden by some fast growing corn. You couldn’t see it coming from the other way. We made the turn, found Isaac and ordered our shed.

On the way back home I thought about well meaning folks who try to help others. They know what aided them, led them to recovery, assisted them in navigating difficult parts of the journey. Their empathy and compassion moves them to offer assistance and advice on how to get to a better place.

However, wisdom tells us that the roads we travel, the signs that guide us, to a place of healing and peace aren’t the same for every person. Oftentimes the way we need to travel is only discovered when we’re lost and can’t see what we’re looking for.

blessings,
@BrianLoging
http://www.thewannabesaint.com

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