Thursday, January 21, 2010

I'm okay

At times I come to realize a taste of the true privilege of owning a vehicle - just coming home in the evening and leaving it down there in the lot - this monster of mechanics and metal that is worth over a thousand dollars (I think), and yet is fully mine, and gets me safely where I want to go. And when I come down in the morning, it's right there. I turn a key, get inside, and can go anywhere I want to. Well, I go to work. But theoretically, ya know.

And yet how quick I am to complain that "Oh, it's cold! The heater takes so long to warm up! Ugh, I have to spend two minutes of my life scraping ice off the windshield! Sheesh, my rear window is so dirty - why can't I have a functioning rear windshield wiper?" I'm such a spoiled brat. Really. And I should be able to realize this more often than just when a major disaster hits an impoverished country.

I am incredibly blessed. And too often I find it enough to just say that and be glad with it, but really, what's the point of a blessing if not to pass it along? Does God bless me because he just wants me to have a sheltered, quiet life, without too much danger, because I'm somehow more special than the people who don't live a life of such high privilege? No!

I would like to be able to do more than just pray and donate some cash - but I'm sure many others would too. I would really like to keep my heart open for more opportunities after this summer wraps up. I'm praying that my sponsored girls in Haiti are okay.

I remember reading a book called "Where we stand: class matters" in philosophy class, and the author talked about the ways people can rationalize not giving to the poor. Because, believe it or not, even people that you see as "rich" have people that they consider even richer than themselves. And the author contended that as long as we have people who we think make us "inferior" financially, we don't feel compelled to give much, because we feel that they should be doing it.

Comparison for the sake of rationalization, or shirking of responsibilities, is a bad thing. But comparison is kinda necessary sometimes, when I find myself getting too content with the wonderful life that I have.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Every day is New Year's Day

It is now the fourth day of this new decade, and I have yet to produce any kind of obligatory "New Year's" entry. Considering my penchant in the past for exhaustive year-end reviews, it seems strange that I have waited so long to write anything, especially since we had a 3-day snowstorm over the weekend, and before going to work today, I hadn't been out of the apartment since getting groceries on Saturday.

Well. I suppose it's becoming clearer in which direction my paltry New Year's resolutions shall (or should) lie. Perhaps in minimizing distractions?

Really though, this time spent snowed in has helped me realize how much I miss the society of others, and this is perhaps the area in which I need the most work. I'm not the person who always knows what to say at the right time - in fact, my silence is more often due to the fact that I usually do the opposite, rather than genuinely having nothing to say. I rarely, if ever, initiate things. Not because I don't want it, but don't know if it will work. Sometimes I have a hard time knowing if I'm helping or hurting. Perhaps it's worth it to try anyway?

Enough of that. I've decided I'm going to try more. (I really should quit with these increasingly vague Resolutions). This short year has proven beyond a doubt that waiting until some grand new "start" (like the beginning of a decade) is not enough motivation to make me change. If I want to change, I just have to resolve to do it, instead of waiting for something. Because there will never be enough motivation out there if I look at it that way.

I know I wasn't the only Mainer who spent a rather lazy weekend at home, out of necessity and safety rather than desire. But it's not okay to be comfortable with that on a regular basis. I'm already making plans for the summer that will take me out of my comfort zone in more ways than one, and I pray that God will use me to impact others instead of just others impacting me this time.

I also resolve to use less "I" in this blog, even though it is mine.