Saturday, June 03, 2006

Back Blogging

My new job provides no real blogging material... or at least not yet. I suppose I could talk about weird men who walk around alone at night and turn off the air conditioners in building 7 long enough for their wives to sleep comfortably and then turn them on again in the morning. I could talk about crazy ladies who sound like broken stereos every time you talk to them. I could talk about drunkards and their ridiculous arguments... with themselves.

But I'm not sure that's really interesting.

So instead of blogging about my job, I'll talk about one other experience from a couple of weeks ago... It was probably a week and a half or so before my brothers first reception of Jesus in the Eucharist and I was outside raking. (It seemed as though God really liked to reveal little things to me while I was raking. It happened a number of times.) I don't know what I was thinking about when I realized that my raking could be related to our lives.

You see, our yard was covered by dead leaves and dead grass. It was choking what little good grass we had left. So we had a guy come out and fix up the yard a bit. He raked A LOT and so did his wife. They probably came two or three times and spent at least an hour out there. Even after they left though, there was a lot still to be rid of. After about a year or so of not really touching the yard (it wasn't obvious how bad it was), it was going to take some serious work to get it cleaned up -- and it's no small yard. So I went out there and started on one side of the yard. I slowly but surely made my way across and around, very thorougly raking out all the bad stuff. In addition to raking it all out we were going to have the tree pruned. Yes, one tree. It covers over half of our back yard -- and half of the neighbors! It reaches back past the fence (since it's probably 15 feet or so from the back) and all the way to our houses. It needed to be cut.

How does this have anything at all to do with our lives? (You mean you don't want to just read about all the work we did to our yard? I haven't even gotten to the bird bath yet!)

Well, I figure it's something like this: We are the yard, the general area. The grass is representative of our spiritual growth. When we have water and light (water being the sacraments and other positive influences and the light (sun) being the light of Christ through the sacraments (because we have to accept the light IN the sacraments for them to be beneficial)) we grow healthy and strong. The leaves are sin. The overgrowth on the tree is when we don't allow Christ into our lives. The leaves and the tree together represent luke-warmness.

So you see, in raking our lives we attempt to rid ourselves of sin and starvation. We want to rake up what is bad in order that we might see what good there is. The strong will survive -- and the good is strong. So we rake what up what is bad, rid ourselves of that horrible burden, but we can't stop there. We have to prune the trees of evil temptation. We have to embrace the light of Christ again (more and more) so that we might grow closer to Him (you know the grass growing taller is kind of like us getting closer... ah never mind). We must continue to water ourselves, allow ourselves to be moved by grace in the sacraments and people in our lives. And as it seems to be with most things, we can't do it only once. We must continue to rid ourselves of choking materials (negative influences, sinful habits, etc.) and keep the tree of temptation cut back, allowing the light to come in (by going to confession and allowing Christ to penetrate our souls through the Eucharist).

When we first start on this, it is quite difficult to see that anything is really being done. It's hard to see what a tremendous effect this will have on us and our lives. The further we go, however, the more obvious it is that we are doing something good and worthy of our time. It's no easy process and it definitely is not a quick one. It takes time and a lot of hard work. And again, as it seems to be with most things regarding holiness, the further you get in your journey, the more obvious it is what still needs to be healed. (Remember the post about getting closer to the light in dirty clothes?) You find more and more little things that need to be raked and the more you rake, the more you want to do a good job. Once you are a good way through you are dumbfounded at how horribly unclean you were. You wonder how you could have let so much time go by in such an awful state. You see the beauty that lies on the other side and stare blankly, unable to understand. Your passion and intensity grows with each passing minute and you want only to be penetrated by goodness.

So you see? Our lives are like the cleaning out of my backyard.

You can run a number of places with that thought and I believe all of them to be good. You can imagine allowing the grass to grow in thick and beautifully bright green. You can imagine adding little flower beds, lining them, and filling them with beautiful flowers. You can imagine bringing out the bird bath and filling it with water, allowing thirsty souls to reach goodness through you. You invite the little ones into the yard to soak up the sun (Son?) and to enjoy the graces you have already found.

So there ends my post. Hope it wasn't a bore. God bless and Mary protect you now and always! Be holy!


Blogger Jaime said...

I wasn't that drunk. I thought my argument was largely coherent..

6/05/2006 11:30:00 PM  

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