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The Lost Ability to Cope

https://i0.wp.com/glamslamtennis.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Anger-Post.jpgI had to cope with waiting in line at the BMV – boring!  I had to cope with riding in the car for 1 hour with nothing to do!

The idea of coping with things in life has almost gone by the wayside.  Let me explain.

Technology now allows us to have entertainment at our fingertips 24/7.  No more boring waiting rooms, or heaven forbid the need to read a magazine.  No more gazing out at the countryside as the car travels quickly down the interstate.  No more coping skills being developed…

Have you ever considered that developing coping skills may be extremely important?  I believe that a lack of coping skills helps to develop a world class complainer.  Waa Waa Waa.   Sure, coping with losing a game on a DS or 3DS can be oh so traumatic, but wait, all we need to do is reset the game and start over until we get the result we want….again, no coping skills being developed.  Sports allow for some coping skills to be learned, but really, when EVERYONE gets to make the team nowadays how is that realistic for training a young person for life?  Do we even pray anymore?

Will your young one be yet another young adult who feels entitled to everything life has to offer?  You might ask how in the world I can jump from coping with riding in a car or losing a video game to how a young adult may struggle in life after mommy and daddy?  I tell you (and you know it) real life is full of disappointment and the need to know how to gracefully deal with it.  We don’t need to be raising a bunch of complainers.  I know because my generation was on the “imaginary line” between dealing with real life all the time and having instant comfort all the time.

My faith even warns me of this time:

2 Timothy 3:1-5 (NIV)
But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.

Whether you adhere to the the words of the Bible or not, I’m quite sure we don’t want the next generation to be whiny, lacking self-control, complaining all the time and unable to cope with the real world.  I see it in my son, even with all my efforts to teach him, he is unable to cope with everyday life much of the time.  He has many outlets, TV, video games, but he has healthy responses too like reading and hobbies learning about and watching birds.  I pray I am able to give him balance, since he must also live in this fast paced self serving world… This world where it is all too apparent that the love of pleasure in all forms has replaced the idea of loving God.  I struggle with this!

So, how do we cope with life?  Have we forgotten to teach about gazing upon the wonders of God’s creation as we drive down the road?  Have we forgotten the Spirit of sharing our faith with our neighbor in line at the BMV?  Have we tossed in the towel and become self serving without realizing it?  Are we boastful and proud, lovers of money, rash, conceited and most of all have we grasped a hold of a form of godliness but denied it’s power (i.e. giving to a good cause yet never being an active part of the cause)?  A huge part of life is learning to cope and handle the challenges placed before us, not to ignore them and bury ourselves in something “that we want to do“.  Digest this challenge and make changes to your life first, then show your young ones what it’s all about.

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Harassment or Government Right?

With the Independence Day celebration just over, I had to bring up a few questions regarding the rights of Americans.  You know things like gun rights, fireworks rights, the need to have some form of I.D. for various reasons… Yes, these things seem to pop up every year over and over and we need to get things out into the open!

I’m going to pick two: Fireworks and I.D. Laws.

Fireworks:

It seems that about every other year, the laws for fireworks change.  What are the laws in your state?  Do you even know?  In Indiana, for years and years, the law was something along the lines of, “You can buy large display fireworks in Indiana, but you need to sign this piece of paper saying you won’t set them off in Indiana.”  Yes, I’m serious.   Now, if you get a license and have the permits in place you can light away.  Of course laws can be different in each city locale, county and many other situations, but typically state laws are taken into account first in my experience in Indiana.

Rarely are firework law breakers prosecuted unless they are party to someone getting an arm blown off etc.  Isn’t that silly?  I tell ya, there were about 1000 illegal firework shows in my surrounding neighborhoods, well, maybe they all got permits.  Maybe…

Great job enforcing those laws over the years Indiana!

I.D. Laws:

Arizona got in trouble over this recently.  Now, they aren’t really in trouble, but people are upset.  I’m not sure who is upset, but I hear some people are upset.  Are you upset?

Do you feel it’s harassment to have to carry a Driver’s License?   You know that thing that says you can drive legally?  If you feel that’s reasonable, then I’m truly curious why it’s unreasonable to require an I.D. that proves you are IN THE COUNTRY LEGALLY.

In Indiana, we are also required to show government I.D. when voting.  They even made a free I.D. card you could get so the $6+ hardship of getting a driver’s license could be avoided.  $6 was equated to being racist.  I don’t know, I think even if I were poor, I could round up $6 for an I.D. (give up a pack of cigarettes or half a case of beer or get rid of cable TV or the expensive cell phone), but no need, it’s free!  Sorry to sound so mean, but really.  If it’s not reasonable to require proving who you are in order to vote, then why the big mess over votes counting in Florida the last few elections?  Tell me.

So, in the end, we can’t simply light up “Big Mama” firework in the street OR maybe we can since the police don’t seem to care unless we hurt someone… AND we have to show I.D. to prove we can legally drive, vote and be in the country.  Sounds reasonable to me, how about you?

A Necessary Story

This short story is created to lower your stress level today.  Yes, you need to lower your stress level, I know it.  Just try to remember why vacation may be important.  Opinion or not, do your best to let go and imagine…

You awaken to the sounds of a distant mountain stream; a few birds singing a morning sonata seem to play in concert with the burbling of water.  A crisp, cool breeze crosses the room and you cozy yourself up under the light blanket for a few more moments of joy.  As you rise from the soft bed you notice the rays of light peeking through the curtains and illuminating a picture on the wall.  It’s a memory of good times of a hike up the side of the mountains with a packed lunch, just you, some binoculars and a small camera.

The memory flashes back and you can almost smell the recently blooming wildflowers that blanketed the side of the mountain that day.  The deep blue sky was perfectly balanced with white puffy clouds.  You can’t recall all the animals and objects you found floating in the heavens that day.  It was magnificent.  As you enjoyed a sip of water and a crisp red apple a hummingbird had stopped by to investigate your scene.  You couldn’t help but notice how alive the whole landscape was that day.  From the distant snow capped mountains to the few elk grazing in the valley, from the busy bees to the rustling pines you knew this was a day to remember.

As you settled back into your reality, and your feet touched the cool wooden floor you put on some day clothes.  The smell of freshly brewed coffee drew you into the kitchen, your favorite mug waiting nearby.  As you tasted the fresh morning drink you saw a family of deer just outside the window.  Once again, you couldn’t wait for yet another day, another memory to be formed…

May God bless you today!

Acknowledgements: Image: Liz Noffsinger / FreeDigitalPhotos.net