October 04, 2020

02

Muscadine and Sourwood 10/03/2020 — 22-Acre Woods, Indian Land, South Carolina, an iPhone Photo
Living from our own center
with nothing at stake in the outcome
is like singing in the shower,
or dancing in the rain.

It is a spontaneous,
impromptu,
improvisational
response to our situation as it arises
and opens before us,
calling us to dance with life
in becoming one with the moment
and the opportunity it offers us
to express ourselves
by offering what is ours to give
in response to the need of the moment
and the time that is at hand.

And this, 
without contrivance
or agenda,
or any thought of what is in it for us,
or how we might seize the moment
for our benefit,
advantage,
gain
or profit,
and "come out ahead"
in any sense of the term.

We're dancing, man!
"And there is only the dance!"
(T.S. Eliot)

The key to living well
is to live as though we are dancing.
When the music begins,
our cares drop away.
We don't know who the President is,
or what our worries are,
or how we are going to manage
with "the wolf at our door."
We dance.
And dancing brings forth 
the joy of life.
The joy of being here, now,
alive in this moment
and able to dance.

The music is there in every moment,
waiting for ears that hear,
and toes that tap,
and hearts that can dance with life!

–0–

01

Two Rocks 02 09/24/2004 –Jordan Pond, Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor, Maine
Abraham's retort to God,
"Shall not the judge of the earth do right?"
is one Job should have used.
Instead, Job cowers before the "Might Makes Right" defense
God uses to justify leaving Job unprotected against the wiles of Satan.

And Baruch would have done well to use it
against God's, "I'll give you your life as a prize of war,"
excuse for refusing to be more of a 
"very present help in time of trouble."

The question is one we shun and ostracize
in the forlorn hope that God will make it up to us
if we are patient and faithful
in trusting ourselves to the ultimate triumph of "God's Plan"
at work through inconceivable evil
to save the day and all the long-suffering True Believers
at the End of Time.  

Habakkuk and Jesus stand out in having
the courage of their own convictions,
in declaring their loyalty and allegiance 
to doing what is right in each situation as it arises,
no matter what--
with the outcome playing no part
in their ongoing and eternal devotion
to doing what needs to be done
moment-by-moment,
day-by-day,
their whole life long.

In so doing, 
they point the way for us all.

Why something happens
or fails to happen
is irrelevant to the situation at hand.
Doing what is called for here and now
is our only concern.

"Here we are--now what?"
is our response to the times
all the time.
How we answer that question,
moment-by-moment,
day-by-day,
sets the tone
and establishes the rhythm
of our life,
and shapes the future
better than any assortment of beliefs
and statements of faith
ever could.

Believe whatever you want,
but do what needs to be done!
Here and now and always and forever!

Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters, three sons-in-law, and five granddaughters, and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

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