Crucial

Crucial: (adj) extremely important

I’m not sure I am qualified to determine what is crucial in my life.

I know each one of us relishes our independence and being free of interference from others.

But there are times when I live too close to my own skin to be objective about my person.

Why? Because sometimes I want to be comfortable instead of motivated. Other times I want to be busy instead of resting—because I fear that my brain will talk to me too much if I’m sitting still.

And there’s a constant seepage of my childhood training dribbling into my contemporary brain, often creating conflict—because after all, my parents, who taught me that childhood curriculum, did not have all the information we have today.

Am I prepared to make a crucial decision about my own life?

I certainly don’t want to turn it over to chance.

I am fed up with those who suggest that prayer is when we release our burdens to the Almighty. Every time I give something over to God, it comes back, “Return to Sender.”

I know I’m supposed to be responsible for my own life.

But can I really be responsible for the truth that would make my life more valuable?

I wish I had a little warning tag attached to my wrist, reading: “If you find this human being and he seems a bit baffled, take him to a safe place and talk nice to him until he regains his senses.”

Yeah, that’s a pretty good idea.

What is crucial?

What is extremely important?

I guess what’s extremely important is realizing that I am not often qualified to actually know what is extremely important.

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Cherub

Cherub: (n) a beautiful or innocent-looking child.

It takes a lot for me to become motivated to try to lose weight.

It’s similar to convincing an ant-eater that ant consumption is bad for its health. After all, you are named “ant-eater.” To suddenly stop eating ants not only removes your diet, but robs you of your identity.

I.e., if I am not a fat man, who am I?

If I’m not the guy talking about calories while lamenting my metabolism, how would I be able to find myself in a crowded mall?

My identity is wrapped up in my weaknesses just as much as my virtues. I don’t know why we take so much time to lie, cheat and cover up our frailties, when the
y are obviously going to pop up and announce their presence.

But every once in a while, I do become motivated to try to carve away some of the fat from my body. It usually takes a shock. One such occasion happened when a gentleman from a newspaper, reviewing my show and describing my face, wrote: “He is a chubby fellow with cherub-like features.”

I was appalled.

There is no man born on this Earth who wants to be a chubby cherub. Matter of fact, if you told a woman that her blind date was “chubby and cherub-like” she just might call in sick.

I became obsessed.

I went to my bathroom mirror and stood there for at least fifteen minutes, peering at my cheeks–my second chin which was thinking about adding on an addition–and eventually became convinced that I indeed was a cherub. Although that supposedly has angelic proportions, it also makes you look too child-like and too plump.

I immediately started a diet, which didn’t last long because I was motivated for all the wrong reasons.

So over the years I have tried to grow a beard, which was as successful as any other cherub, and I’ve sported a mustache–a goatee which I occasionally have to pencil in because it’s just not dark enough.

This whole story would be very pathetic except for the fact that deep in my heart, I really don’t care.

My confidence is not based on my appearance, but rather, the confidence my appearance may proffer to others.

 

 

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Became

Became: (v) past tense of begin to beDictionary B

5:52 A. M.

Groggy, but awake.

In no particular hurry to start the day nor motivated to grab my pillow and embrace additional slumber.

So I think.

I think about what I became.

Because if we don’t stop every once in a while and review the journey, we will fail to acknowledge the value of the miles.

There was never anything special about me. Growing up in a very small town, quality was measured in tiny increments so as to give everybody a chance to be honored.

But especially when I found myself moving into larger villages and then cities, my talent was often weighed in the balances and found wanting.

At that point I had a choice: I could give up, or I could give out.

Giving up was finding a perch suitably small enough to make my offering seem valuable.

Giving out, on the other hand, was admitting lack and trying to find how much grit and mortar I had inside, to build a better possibility.

On those mornings when I awake early, without need of leaping into action, I like to look at what I became:

  • Overweight
  • Under-educated
  • Moderately attractive
  • And sufficiently disguised

Still, I have mustered a life complete with family, fundamentals and a future.

It’s pretty remarkable.

So if any young person would ask me what the key is to success, I would reply very simply, “Stop looking for it. Start doing a daily evaluation … and celebrate what you became.”

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Age of Consent

Words from Dic(tionary)

dictionary with letter A

Age of consent: (n) the age at which a person’s, particularly a girl’s, consent to sexual intercourse is valid by law.

I am thoroughly convinced that a conservative philosophy would work beautifully if those who pursued it were actually faithful.

Likewise, I have no doubt that a liberal agenda would be equally as positive if the people adhering to its tenets would not swerve from their conviction.

The problem is inconsistency–and nowhere does this show up in our society any more than in our dealings with our children–and especially with our teenagers. Let me give you an example.

Teenagers are supposed to have the wisdom to study for school, take care of their lockers, drive a car, decide what college they want to go to, study for the SAT, make good choices on not drinking alcohol or smoking cigarettes, and control their hormones.

Yet by the same token, we turn right around and say they are irresponsible, childish, silly, that their brains don’t fully develop until they’re twenty-five years of age, and that they are just as capable of lying as they are of breaking out in acne.

We have to make up our minds.

If our children are able to drive a car down the street, are they not also mature enough to make decisions about their own sexuality?

We don’t want our children to be drug dependent, while simultaneously living in a society that has a free flow of alcohol and is discussing legalizing marijuana–to further deaden their personalities.

They can’t drink until they’re twenty-one, yet in every movie or television show, we see high school students freely consuming alcohol products, as if they just stopped off at the local party store and picked up a bunch.

Somewhere along the line, we need to get a handle on what we really believe the young humans are capable of achieving and what we think they aren’t.

I firmly believe that the teenagers who came through my house were capable of doing anything at all–as long as they were adequately motivated and supervised. I believe they were nearly worthless if left to their own initiative.

I don’t know whether that is a positive or a negative–it’s just my finding. To me, young humans are very similar to guns. In the hands of the right individual, who is responsible and willing to point the implement in the correct direction, there can possibly be a powerful use. But guns left lying around will always fall into the wrong hands.

Such is the case with the teenager.

So it is time for our society to realize that when puberty is striking people at the age of twelve or thirteen, to ask these individuals to withhold their urges for ten years in order to complete a college education is not only ridiculous, but may be the definition of impossible.

So what am I saying about the age of consent? I know we have to have a legal number so as to run our society in a prudent way–but I do think it is the duty of all parents to sit down with their children and candidly walk through the entire process of human sexuality–and let them know the consequences of all actions.

So what is the age of consent?

I really do not think human beings are able to consent to their own choice in sexuality until they have been taught what is destructive and what is valuable. For some folks, that means they probably shouldn’t kiss until they’re thirty. But for other kids, it could be much younger.

Our culture is desperately in need of some consistency. I welcome the concept of freedom … as long as it is intentionally and ferociously linked to responsibility.