February 09, 2021

04

Atchafalaya Highways 02/10/2014 Oil Paint Rendered — Ramah, Louisiana
We are not free to want just anything.
We are bound to want what we want
whether we want to or not.

We live in bondage to our wants
as slaves to their master.

Freedom is found in freely doing what is called for
whether we want to or not.

Since we are already wanting what we want,
whether we want to or not,
doing what is called for
whether we want to or not,
is a simple matter of shifting loyalties.
Wanting to has nothing to do with anything.

If the baby's diaper needs to be changed,
we change the diaper.
If the dog needs to go out for walk,
we take the dog for a walk.
If it is raining,
we walk in the rain.

What does the situation require?
That is what we do.
In the right way.
At the right time.
Exactly as it ought to be done.

Forget what you want.
Begin looking for what
needs you to do it.
Want that,
whether you want it or not.
Do that.
And all that comes after that.

This is a shift that will
transform your life,
and change the world.

–0–

03

Grand Prismatic Spring 06/28/2011 01 — Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
It comes down to meeting the moment
the way the moment needs to be met--
the way the moment needs us to meet it--
moment-by-moment
in each situation as it arises
all our life long.

We live to do right by the moment
we are living
in every moment.

Baseball teams that do that
more often than other baseball teams
tend to win the World Series.

The number of baseball teams
that don't do that
are a testimony to how difficult it is to do.
But, who needs a testimony?
We know how difficult it is to do!

How many moments are in a day?
How many of those do we do right by,
day after day?
What happens to keep that from happening
in every moment?

What interferes with our ability
to do right by the moment,
every moment?

Pay attention to your moments.
See what is stopping you 
from doing right by those
you fail to do right by.

–0–

02

Bright Angel Point 09/20/2005 Oil Paint Rendered, — North Rim, Grand Canyon National Park, Utah
We live in each moment
to redeem and atone for
the ways we have lived
in all previous moments.

And, if that is a bit of an overstatement,
it isn't too much of one.

Another way of stating the same thing
is to say, "We live to get better--
to do better-
to improve.
To become more like we need to be
than we are.
To be more of what the situation 
needs us to be
than we have been thus far."

Any way we say it,
it comes down to redemption and atonement.

Living redemptively 
is living consciously--
living mindfully,
compassionately,
aware of what is called for
here and now,
and how best to respond to 
what is needed,
moment-by-moment.

The redemptive, atoning, act
is spontaneous sincerity,
at one with the music of the moment.

We dance with each situation as it arises.
How well we do that tells the tale--
to that point--
and provides us with what we need
to do it better in the next situation as it arises,
day by day,
throughout our life.

–0–

01

The Relic 01 11/04/2002 Oil Paint Rendered — Down East, North Carolina
Being right about what is called for
and doing it
in each situation as it arises
is all that it takes.

All it takes to do what it takes
is to enter each situation as it arises
without will,
desire,
preference,
or opinion
beyond seeing and doing 
what is called for,
regardless of the implications
for us personally.

The only thing standing between us
and being right about what is called for
and doing it
in each situation as it arises
is us.

What are we going to do about that?

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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