Lost in Space
I am slowly learning to step back and view things from the big picture. For example, in the midst of some small crisis, I sometimes step back and think: "Right now I'm on a giant ball in the sky, and it's spinning." I can only imagine what we look like from somewhere far off in the universe -- bustling around, consumed by our sometimes irrational thoughts, thinking we are the be-all and end-all. I once said that to my friend. She was going on and on about some trivial thing that was really magnified in her life at the time. I said: "Right now you are on a gigantic ball in the sky that is somehow suspended perfectly in the atmosphere. Anything could happen. At any given moment, we could just start spinning into oblivion!" The distant, troubled look she previously had in her eyes disappeared. She looked at me and forgot what the hell she was talking about.
Look, I know there are things we need to take care of. I understand that we often have real problems. But the truth of the matter is most times there isn't a whole hell of a lot we can do about the things that we are consumed with. We worry about things that we have absolutely no control over. We make judgments and statements with such audacity -- one would think we were the creator of our environment -- that we know with certainty the M.O. of everything on the face of the earth and perhaps even above. We have our two feet planted so firmly and adamantly on the ground that we can't possibly be moved to see things from another perspective. The reality is that the true perspective should leave us speechless. It should leave us feeling like children lost in a big amusement park desperately seeking our parents. Because without them we are wandering aimlessly amidst a vast and complex domain.
What would happen in that scenario if the child -- lost in the amusement park -- strutted confidently around perhaps even attempting to run the place? He might explain (to the best of his ability) the mechanics of every ride in the park. "The rides" he might say "are made of metal and go really fast." Not only that, but he could (in his age-appropriate way) explain the dynamics of every living thing that surrounded him. "The water in the log flume is deep and cold." Those things he is absolutely certain of. Perhaps he was even right. Still, there is much he is not capable of knowing at his tender age, and a young child is usually as fairly certain of his limitations as he is of his abilities. That's just one of the attractive qualities of a child.
It would be wonderful if we could live our entire lives like children lost in an amusement park. We would perhaps tread more modestly while at the same time be filled with joy and excitement. We could eat all the junk food we want and go on the dangerous rides, both of which mom and dad would never approve of. But we'd know that eventually we will be found and pay the price when mom and dad find out what we've done. We'd be wary of strangers who might try to lead us astray. And although it might be fun and exciting to be amidst all the people rushing around to get their fill of all the pleasure the amusement park has to offer, we'd be kind of melancholy at the same time. We'd miss mom and dad, and after a while we'd just want to go home. The amusement park can be a bit overwhelming without mom and dad.
I think that's exactly how we should feel and often do feel but can't decipher. Try it today. In the midst of some small crisis step back and picture yourself in the infinite universe -- lost on the amusement park that is Earth. What's your first impulse in that scenario? It should be to drop to your knees in awe and pray for dear life! It should leave you feeling small, lost, and powerless and open to the guidance and direction of your elders to find your way home. If you keep running, carelessly enjoying the freedom and distracted by the sights and sounds in the "park," you may never find mom and dad.
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