Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Guilt-free Apple Pie and Red Sox

Mmmm.... nothing like my apple crumb pie for breakfast. Perhaps I should sell my pies?

Baseball fever has hit our home. Yes, I admit to being one of those late-season MLB fans which makes me wonder why I don't watch games throughout the season. (Baseball is much slower than football.) Last night, Cody and I sat and watched the Red Soxs pitch to victory. The Yankees tried to cheat with a couple of plays, but the refs proved themselves true. The fans were both prayerful (hands clasped, looks of contrition for a run) and violent (the mob police lined left and right field at the beginning of the 9th). I love to ponder about such things. It always hearkens back to the nature of man, n'est-ce pas?

I taught Cody about 'the count' and 'the strike zone' and what innings are. I envisioned lots of future time watching games. Fun. Tonight is the final game of the series. Go Sox!

Cody has been sick these last couple of days. One morning, he had problems breathing. I'm glad that I'm here to hand him water and medicine; I'm glad I don't need to worry about outside work without me. I'm glad that he's improving now. One more day at home, and he'll be ready to go.

I've been thinking about guilt this morning (perhaps the pie?). I know that the Christian belief is sometimes synonymous with the presence of guilt. I am guilty, therefore I confess. I thought a wrong thought, therefore I am sinful. Our entire nature is sinful, therefore I am thoroughly drenched with guilt. Yes, and if you believe the story, Christ came and saved us from our sins, but, still here I am heavy with the 'natural man', guilty at every corner, sinful still despite a grace.

I'm tired of carrying this around, and, furthermore, it's not intended that I do. Within my belief system, it's not intended that guilt hang like an anchor around my neck. Guilt intertwines with insecurity -- I'm not good enough. I ended a phone conversation quickly yesterday w/o reason. I'm socially inadequate. I can't do things well, etc, etc. An endless barrage if you let it. And, sometimes justifiable if you're an admitted 'guilt-carrying natural man' through the spiritual lens. Justifiable in the sense that we use the guilt tag as an excuse to allow these thoughts access to us. I'm bad, we might say, I need God. See how guilty and inadequate I am all the time? I need God. To an extent, that stance is acceptable; however, it's not our lot in life to carry the woebegone attitude around due to an initial guilt (which is pardoned) or a struggle to choose good.

I know several friends who would disagree with me. And, if we could talk for hours, we would probably arrive on very similar ground. Personally, though, I have to release the guilt as much as possible. For some reason, I can carry destructive levels of it around for hardly any reason.

So, today, everything I do will be good. If I don't read the books I need to, if I stumble over my words as a leader in a small group this evening, if I don't reconcile with a friend, if I only eat crumb apple pie for meals, if the house lays splintered with odds and ends, if I don't practice the mandolin, I will be doing good by breathing and desiring to be, inwardly, good despite the outward actions which are inconsequential to this fact.

Alrighty then, onward to the next bite!

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