Posted by: jamesthethickheaded | April 19, 2008

What’s Needed… and Not (Part Won)

Looking over my recent posts and how I began this… I sense some of the fun’s gone out like the air in a left-over balloon. I’m collecting the usual tidbits… big whup. “Gee… that really helps… another droplet from the Thickheaded Dude.” And I guess in part it’s that we’re still in Lent… and ’round ’bout now it seems like it’ll never leave. The smell of a burgers on the grill wafting through the yard is thrilling more than just my dog… who seems to look back at me wondering, “So when are YOU gonna git with the program?” So I started thinking how I got here… is it the journey, or is it just me?

And as I wander through the pages of our Orthoghetto here on the web, there are both wonders… and grumbles. And as the lately come interloper… it’s been my resolve to keep myself from grumbling… I mean in large part, I’ve come to the Church to try not fall into the half of the fifty-plus grumbling geezers…. but find even with this M.O., it’s gittin’ a lot harder these days. Heck, we all love a good rant every now and then. And when you think of the great ones…. how they pull down the high and mighty presumptions of power, wealth, or fame with a little of the humor from the back of the bus where the real people sit… well.. it can be pretty compelling and welcome. This is of course is the excuse we begin all our rants with….

But then there’s that old mote-beam thing: the sort that really bites and suggests the pretense is less in the object than in the eyes of the speaker. These usually come from the “smart” or “fancy” people… who really do know better. No kiddin’. But just as often… they’re plain folks like you and me, who have just given in to a moment of weakness… or without knowing better, simply join someone else’s beefin’. “I dunno…. Felt good at the time.”

So let me say that even here in my naive bulletproof bubble of “nice”… I hear the chattering voices of what’s wrong in America’s religious realms… there is no shortage…. and Orthodox are no shrinking violets just ’cause we’re workin’ on “keepin’ it real” with the “real thing”. We throw stones in our own glass houses as carelessly as everyone else. Sometimes some of these circle the globe and land on our own; other times they fall aimlessly nearby. Collateral damage ain’t make believe.

All of which gets me to thinking…. dangerously…. that I doubt the real spiritual athletes sit around after pressing a few and say, “Hey, the continuous prayer was great, but can we get started now with the gripe session? I mean, I “channelled” a few of the great witnesses last night… and you wouldn’t believe what they’re seeing. Whoah! I mean… St. Silhouan… he’s okay… but how’d this other guy get in here? And those guys over there in… yeah… the folks in THAT parish trying to connect-in for dial-a-prayer…. what’s that about? They’ve got it all wrong… and think just because they have a frequent caller card….”

Maybe they call it intercessionary griping. I don’t know. Seems like this isn’t how it’s supposed to be….. And maybe it’s a bit trite to suggest.. but I’m thinking about cheerleaders. And no, I’m not talking ’bout the ones in skimpy skirts… but the real ones we find everyday among us…. in suits, in tees, and just everyday wear. Wouldn’t you think we could sure use a few ’bout now ?

Maybe it’s not such a bad time to look for them, to hear them, and try to join in. Whether we find them among the Saints… or hidden here among us as well. Just think how many times we hear, “This is one heckuva a game… and it’s gonna tighten up… but there is so much to be thankful for…. just being here.” Usually hear it ’bout some game… but maybe it applies as well to us here, now and always… at the end of Lent and start of Holy Week.

Have a blessed Easter!


  1. Nor let us grumble as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer. (I Cor. 10:10)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: