Monday, September 12, 2016

Illuminations 9.12.16



Every life is but a mist. 

I plan for years to come (quite confidently, while simultaneously worrying about the minutes ahead and in it all). Yet I can lose focus of today, stuck in yesterday antomorrow, forgetting that this current intake of breath is a gift. 

Fifteen years ago I was a second grader; hating my teacher, wondering when mommy was picking me up, and jealous of the kids leaving early. I was too young to see a burning building as anything more than fantasy, and I was too scared of my math homework being checked to think about people jumping out windows from thirty floors up. I didn't see it then, and can fail to see it now, that in an instant Life's greatest worries can become the Dead's imaginary friends. From tragedy-brought by wars or created by anyone but the sufferers-to something as simple as a miscommunication, can lead to the line being cut, the river stopping short, the windows to the soul being shut for the last time. Every life is but a mist. 

But mists can be beautiful. Temporary does not mean terrible and small does not mean useless. 

The frailty and fragility of fortune doesn't mean that we need to live our lives in a constant flux of anxiety. Trust me. Take it from a young man, who will only be 22 next week, and yet has to remind himself daily that the next four months will not determine the rest of his life. If I graduate with uncertainty for what life will bring me, it shouldn't lead me to forget that at least the last four months were certain in my timeline. I'm a man of faith so I shouldn't get it twisted; my Creator has given me many things, including the words to write, the fingers to type and the reader of this long-winded anecdote. 

I can go from hearing a dying man tell me what he sees in me, to having my mother break down in my arms for not calling her enough to having my little one run a block up to my arms as she screams "UNCLE, UNCLE" not a care in her heart but the fact that she wants to fly, and in all this just call it last Thursday. My hands have held a life twenty minutes old, and they've also been to the core of a deceased body, with two months in between the two experiences. Life is but a mist, but every mist contains molecules. 

Life is a wonderful thing that shouldn't be taken for granted and as I work, learn, play and work again, I can still remember my fellow man and I can still remember to love myself. These things will forever be important. A mist can bring cooling to the face, spectacle to the eye or annoyance to the dry. A mist is more powerful than one can deduce from quantitative observation. After all, get enough mist together and you have an ocean devoted to lives that matter and true freedom that is anything but American. 

A mist is not a mistake, every person has value, and I'm a believer that every mist can choose to be a missile of misfortune or a misdemeanor to misery. We can create, build, destroy and tweak, the choice is ours, yours, mine. 

As I sit here on the train (where all my best reflecting gets done), I thought it worthy in the case of honoring not just the three thousand of a decade and a half ago, but of the millions and billions lost due to everything from natural cause to irredeemable injustices to think about life. 

What is your life, if not a mist? 

Inspired by 
James 4:14 "Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.

and 

"Life is good, life is great, life is unbelievable. Life is hard, life is cruel. Life is so beautiful." - 
"Life is Good" by LFO 


Stay golden,
Mike 

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