19 August 2017

Eight Ball Answers ~ Yes Definitely

Greetings Dear Reader,

The contrast between “Yes” and “Yes Definitely” may not be obvious.  Depending on one’s perspective the addition of definitely can be positive or negative.  In either case the addition is intended to dispel doubt.

People doubt for many reasons.  Sometimes it our past actions that cause doubt.  Sometimes it is their past experience that yields the same.  Still we want to dispel it when we make our yes definite. 

It is more important for me that no matter my past failings I establish an ongoing consistency of trust.  The simple answer of yes needs to be enough.  I cannot do anything about the doubts of others but love them and live the truth.  I cannot dispel the past.  I can only let my yes be yes and my no be no.

This is who I am commanded to be.  When I am not then I am not following Christ.  I cannot undo the wrong I have done.  I can live a life where love with integrity crushes the barriers I have helped create. 

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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18 August 2017

Eight Ball Answers ~ Yes!

Greetings Dear Reader,

I think that our society has lost its understanding of this word.  We say it all the time.  This is the most simple and definitive positive affirmation of a question.  It is one syllable that is clear in meaning. 

“Will you take out the trash as you are leaving?” 
“Yes.”

One has just entered into a contract.  Then we equivocate.  We do so with words that follow the affirmation.  “Yes…(pause), unless there is green cheese in the bag.”   We make our unconditional affirmation conditional.   We leave ourselves a back door. 

We do this on small things or large things.   We say yes and then look for the loopholes.  We violate our commitment then justify with indignation and anger.  “I said yes but things changed.”

Saying yes is an exchange of power.  You have the power to say no right up until you say yes.  You can bring all the situational ethics into the question you wish but it is still your choice to say yes or no.  If you say yes you have an obligation.

I have failed at this. I have hurt others through this failure.  My obligation is to let my yes be yes.  There may be honest variables to consider.  If there are then I must not say yes.   I must use the if/then formula.  If it is not raining then I will come to the picnic.  We must be clean, clear, and honest in our communication.   I must be no matter what anyone else is.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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17 August 2017

Eight Ball Answers ~ Without A Doubt

Greetings Dear Reader,

Doubt is a curious thing.  It is one of those creatures that has power only given to it.  It does not live on its own.  It is born and lives in the mind.  It is completely subject to the will.

Faith comes very easy for me.  That does not mean that I do not doubt.  What it does mean; what it necessitates is that I deal with doubt honestly.  I musts acknowledge it when it tries to flicker to life.

I am sure this is one of the things that is meant by bringing every thought into captivity.  It is not wrong to have doubt.  I have spoken of this at length.  How I deal with it, however, can determine my entire future.

No one wakes up on a Thursday morning and abandons faith.  They start earlier by nursing the spark of doubt in the wrong way.  They entreat and nurture it until it becomes an all-consuming fire.  They find a focal point for the doubt and magnify it.  Thursday comes and faith has been added to the fire of doubt.

It is not wrong to doubt.  It is wrong to doubt in dishonesty.  Job makes it clear.  He points out that he will not charge God foolishly.  He will not doubt the goodness of God even amidst the ruin of his life, the loss of his children, and the damage to his health. 

I must let the spark rise from the fire if it tries.  I must also be ready to cling to faith that the Father is good.  The Son is worth following.  Faith is more powerful than all that I see.  Again my friend Job makes it clear, “even if he kills me, it will serve him…even if my body is turned to dust, I will se him in the flesh.”

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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16 August 2017

Eight Ball Answers ~ It Is Certain

Greetings Dear Reader,

What do we mean when we say something is a certainty?  We assure people that we will do something or be somewhere.  We commit to an event, a time, or a place.  We commit to relationships or participation.

Then we back out.  We modify our minds.  Things change.  We decide that we want something different than that to which we have pledged a certainty.  That event, time, relationship becomes something to which we will not hold our certainty.

This is not how the Father deals with us.  If he says it is certain then it is certain.  There is not even a shadow of uncertainty.  We ascribe uncertainty to the Father because we are uncertain.  When we do not have all the answers we allow our uncertainty to be projected on others.

I cannot fault others when they are uncertain due to my failures in the past.  I must not, however, doubt the one I follow.  He has said it is certain that all things are under his care.  He has assured me that his promises to me will never fail. 

If I doubt it must be my uncertainty and not a false accusation that I cannot be certain about Christ and following him.  Doubt is not wrong.  Failure to distinguish between my uncertainty and the assurances of God is dangerous.  If I do not assure that my questions are founded on what is certain then I cannot use my faith whilst I sort out the rest.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

(͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

15 August 2017

Second Thoughts – Progressing Princess

Greetings Dear Reader,

Sometimes I will end the day with thoughts that are important to get out.  Usually I just write them and put them in my journal folder.  I have chosen that on occasion I will share them with you Dear Reader.

When I wrote this post last year it was from a luxury room at a Disney Resort.  I was weary from an amazing day of escorting my Daughter, Christmas around the Magic Kingdom where she dressed like a true Princess for our dinner at Cinderella's Castle. 

Tonight our dinner was a simpler fare at a local steak house.  Her Brother and I did our best to make her feel beautiful and celebrated.  Nothing I can do even with my vast power over words can express how much she is loved and valued. 

As each year slips through the glass I am amazed at her power to rebound and recover.  She has the ability to dazzle and delight others.  She is a gifted artist who uses imagination and insight to help others see what they envision.

I am proud to be he papa and blessed to see her impact in the lives of others.  Happy Birthday Christmnas.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”
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Eight Ball Answers ~ It Is Decidedly So

Greetings Dear Reader,

One of my favorite recurring lines from Star Trek: The Next Generation is when Captain Picard would say, “Make it so.”  It was his command of decision.  It meant that discussion was ended and there was work to be completed.  His crew was to transform the command to reality.

Sometimes the answers we give seem like more than yes because of the way in which we give them.  There is a confidence in this one that implies more than affirmation.  There is a timbre to it that communicates beyond certainty.

This answer implies that the thing is not just on the horizon but is complete.  If something is “so” it exists.  Instead of hoping we may have realization.  Instead of wondering what will be this answer assures that it is. 

I think that there are many things that do not yet exist that want to be so.  We count on them even if the outcome is uncertain.  We depend on them even if the odds are slim.  There are things that require faith and there are things that are accomplished.  I must assure that I do not confuse the two.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

(͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

14 August 2017

Eight Ball Answers ~ You May Rely On It

Greetings Dear Reader,

For those of you who are regular readers you know that when I write thoughts in a series I tackle an aspect a day until I am finished.  Because of this, on longer paths I do not always know what will be unfolding in my life when I reach a certain thought in the topic.  This gives God opportunity to work out his sense of humor in my life.

It is the nature of life that we must rely on certain things.  I think we live in a constant imbalance in this area.  We rely to much on the things for which we think we have all the answers.  We put our security in things that we think are stable and fixed.

The problem with this approach is that things are never as stable as they seem.  A company is sold to another company and seven hundred people are found redundant.  On a Thursday they are told they no longer have a job.  On Friday they no longer have insurance.  If they have relied on that paycheck with no contingency dire straits are on the horizon.

We rely on our families in many cases.  They fail sometimes.  Sometimes they learn from their failures and work to be reliable again.  Sometimes they repeat the pattern of failure no matter how often they say they understand and will stop.  Sometimes they just do not care.  Sometimes they walk away to pursue their things never considering the years of devastation their children come to rely on.

I must be reliable.  I have not always been so. I must also realize that I must not rely on others for anything without a contingency.  I do not mean this in a harsh way.  I do mean that I must recognize that only the Father and the Son are the family that can be completely counted on when they say “You may rely on it.”

Sweet River Roll – Waterdeep

Homebound Henry's he’s got a tumor in his head
He wakes up sweating every morning after dreaming he was dead
He used to think that life was boring, but now that's not the case
He turns to his wife in the evening
He says "Honey I'm afraid I'm gonna lose this race"

Sweet River roll all over me
Sweet River roll, hey all over me

Soaking wet Juliet, she lives in a well full of tears
Her husband left her for some bimbo after twenty-two years
Now she's got to start all over, but she's just so terrified
She thinks it woulda been so much easier if he woulda just died

Sweet River roll all over me
Sweet River roll, hey all over me

Now I'm lookin' out my car window sittin' in the pouring rain
Although your house is fifteen miles away, I can still feel your pain
Now I've thought and prayed and worked it
Through about a hundred times or more
How your soul just cries to everyone to help you get up off the floor

Right now it's morning, you're probably sleepin'
I bet you're totally unaware
Of the flood of kisses you hold back by the way that you despair
It ain't me I'm talking about here, or anybody else you can touch
That's all I want to say right now, I don't want to say too much

Except Sweet Jesus roll
Roll all over me
Sweet Jesus roll, hey
All over me

Sweet Jesus, oh you has to roll, hey
You gotta roll all over me
Sweet Jesus, oh You has to roll, hey
And use to set me free
Ahh just set me free, hey

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

(͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

13 August 2017

Second Thoughts – One Small Thing

Greetings Dear Reader,

Sometimes I will end the day with thoughts that are important to get out.  Usually I just write them and put them in my journal folder.  I have chosen that on occasion I will share them with you Dear Reader.

Because staying in my small abode alone is unhealthy for me I have taken to spending one morning a week writing in a coffee shop.  I have a couple of favorites but both have the same need.  By nature coffee shops have limited seating and even fewer seats with access to power points. 

My tenure at these busy purveyors of caffeine and cream is usually a few hours.  The seats that offer readily available electricity all have tables that seat four or more.  I feel guilty taking up the space when all I am doing is drinking lemon ginger tea and working away at my next tale. 

Then I stumbled upon an idea.  With the manager’s permission and assistance I made up my little sign.  It simply says, “Feel free to share my table.”  I place it behind my laptop and focus on my work.  No has joined me yet.

There has been, however, a stream of comments about it.  At least once each visit someone will comment how thoughtful the sign is.  I know it makes the owner happy.   Then there are the curious.  There are people who actually ask if I am serious.  I assure them that I am but they move on to another table.

The most curious are those who notice and feel the need to apologize to me.  They explain that they are meeting other people or need to sit outside.  I try to reassure them that I am not offended and thank them for saying hi.  It is just curious that they are worried about me being bothered by their not sitting with me. 

It reminds me that I live in a society where offense is so easily manifested and sometimes even sought.  It reminds me that the motorways and footpaths of my town are paved in eggshells. 

I must remain difficult to offend.  I must assure that I remain open to the company of strangers. I must be considerate of the business owners to whom I give my custom.  It is vital that I am aware of the needs of all those with whom I congress.  If I am to follow Christ well I must remain approachable and available; generous and kind.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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Eight Ball Answers ~ As I See It, Yes

Greetings Dear Reader,

There is a picture in one of our family albums from when I was a teen.  We are at an outing for my dad’s business.  I am about to depart for college and my youngest brother is a toddler.  The picture is of toddling along holding my hand.  Only my hand with my massive school ring shows as the focus of the shot is my brother.

In that picture my hand and class ring look large because of the small size of my brother.  I am looking at that same ring right now.  It looks small and insignificant just held in the palm of my hand. 

So many of the differences in our world are a matter of perspective.  When we discuss things with others from the mundane to the universal is so often comes down to where we stand when we are looking at the issue.  We use values, information, and beliefs to color in the black and white of things to construct our perspective.

“As I see it” always implies perspective.  From where I stand it means that there is information behind the assertion that is being offered.  The agreement has been weighed in the scales of perspective.  This is both good and bad.

The counsel of others always comes from their perspective.  It is why we must seek the counsel of those who understand ours.  Our choices must be informed by good counsel.  In making it good we must consider the perspective of those we ask.  We must always take I to account the source of our support. 

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”
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12 August 2017

Eight Ball Answers ~ Most Likely

Greetings Dear Reader,

One of you asked me yesterday if I was just shaking the Magic 8-Ball® and writing about the answer that came up to the surface.  I am not.  I am going in a very specific order.  I did repeat one answer.  I will leave it to you, Dear Reader, to discern why.  I think I know who will most likely sus it out.

That brings us to today’s ponderance.  When I ask a question that is a yes or no question and someone says most likely, I always feel that the question is being avoided.  That does not mean that it is true but that is how it feels to me. 

Most likely implies yes but does not assure it.  It is left to the hearer to infer the degree to which the person is affirming.   It is a loophole for the person giving the answer.  It is easy to slip out of the apparent assertion by simply pointing out the it was likely but not confirmed. 

The difficulty with leaving oneself a back door is that one is not being honest.  It is not wanting to commit to something but wishing to appear that we are committing.   This response can take other forms such as “we could do that”, “that sounds good”, or “that’s a great idea”. 

These are not affirmative answers.  They are simple diversions intended to make one think that there is agreement.  Using this to manipulate a situation is not right for me.  If I am unsure I must say so.  If I am reticent to agree I should not make one believe that I do just to keep favor.  It is my obligation to speak the truth in love.  That is enough.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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