Conscious

Conscious: (adj) the state of being awake and aware

In a spirit of candor, I will tell you that it is much easier to discuss pain when it is not your own.

Speaking of it in the abstract does afford an opportunity to be philosophical instead of devastated. So I preface my comments today with that realization.

My son was hit and run by a car and suffered a severe brain trauma which left him in a coma, unconscious.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

We stayed with him, we loved him, we prayed for him–even though the doctors felt the prognosis was grim. We were about a month-and-a-half into the experience when I asked a nurse when my son would come out of the coma.

I just wanted her opinion.

She looked at me, surprised, and said, “I thought you knew. He’s been out of the coma for about a week.”

I was bewildered.

You see, the reason for my confusion was that the young fellow was not responsive, couldn’t communicate and just stared off in the distance.

I assumed there was more work to be done, but the nurse explained that the coma was over and that he was conscious–but the accident had robbed him of skills and brain-power.

After she told me this, I looked at him carefully and realized that he was exhibiting waking and sleeping periods, and that there seemed to be some presence of life–but no conscious effort to reach out of the shell of his body.

It was frightening, debilitating and agonizing.

It is a great gift–to be alive.

It is even a greater bestowal–to be able to hear and receive information.

But we must never forget how blessed we truly are–to be conscious of the world around us, and able to offer a response.

 

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Compromise

Compromise: (n) an agreement reached by each side making concessions.

Dinner chatter.

I’m speaking of those conversations that occur after a fine meal, while some sip on wine and others lick their cheesecake fork.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

These are the moments when people feel the need to wax philosophical while simultaneously appearing to be extraordinarily open-minded.

So one person shares his or her opinion and another adds detail, being very careful not to contradict, but instead, enhance.

By the end of the exchange, a summary is formed in which everyone’s sentiments are included in some capacity–almost like a discussion scrapbook.

The host or hostess often conclude by saying things like:

“Well, I’m sure all the political parties have something good to share since they all love America.”

Or:

“Even though we should be sensitive to each other’s cultures and respect difference, there is no race left out or creed dispelled.”

Or one of my favorites:

“It would seem that all paths lead to God and each one of us selects a profile literally tailored to our soul.”

We love compromise.

Matter of fact, in the American system, compromise is considered more sacred than authenticity. For years and years we’ve rejected obvious truth to make sure we did not offend anyone in the room.

Let me tell you something about the path to God:

It demands truth on our inward parts, and in no way, shape or form are we to distinguish, isolate or even separate off into groups–because God is no respecter of persons.

 

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Bear

Bear: (n) a heavy wild animal with thick fur and sharp claws which has many varietiesDictionary B

Is the key in knowing what, and then when, or is it more accurate to pursue when, while acquiring what?

Please pardon the philosophical approach.

Is when more important than what, or does what take primary position over when?

Let’s study the bear.

Because even though this creature is known as a lumbering mammoth of fur and flesh with a ravenous appetite, which can be quite dangerous if aggravated, it does spend much of its time sleeping in a cave.

The bear has simply discovered when to be industrious and what to do. The bear has also learned when to be lazy, and what is the best slumber.

I think we are either lazy when we need to be industrious, or industrious when it might be better for us to lay back and hibernate.

Think of it from the bear’s perspective:

  • Spring and summer come along, which have pleasant weather, lots of fish to eat and picnic baskets to poach.
  • Then there’s winter. Even though you have a coat, why use it?

So crawling into a cave, relaxing, realizing that most things are not blooming and that picnic baskets have been put into the closet for better days, you choose to survive this down period by resting instead of fretting.

It’s very ingenious.

It’s probably why the bear has survived the post-dinosaur era until now, with very little sign of disappearing.

So I guess to capsulize this into an easily remembered slogan:

Learn from the bear … and don’t do what you can’t bear.

 

 

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Battery

Battery: (n) a container consisting cells, in which chemical energy is converted into electricity and used as a source of power.Dictionary B

Click.

Actually, there wasn’t even a click. It was just a sense of suspended animation while I held my car key in the position which normally ignited my engine, but this time–no fire.

The radio did not work.

The lights didn’t work.

The car was suddenly cast into the role of being a one-ton paperweight.

All because my battery was dead.

It didn’t give me any warning. Oh, I suppose I should have been keeping up with its passing birthdays, but I didn’t.

So I, who just short moments earlier was in the midst of a deep discussion about some procedure to raise at the upcoming meeting, suddenly became a dumbfounded, indigent traveler, with no idea on where to go or what to do.

Fortunately, somebody gave me a jump to start my car and I drove down to the local Wal-Mart to purchase a battery.

Because here’s the truth: there’s just no goose without the juice.

Nothing happens without the energy.

As I watched them put my battery in, I waxed philosophical. (I occasionally do that, fostering an annoying practice which somehow refuses to leave me.)

  • I need a battery for my emotions.

I must remind myself that to feel things–otherwise I am not capable of being in relationship with other humans who, like me, are creatures of emotion.

  • I need a battery for my spirit.

Something other than prayer and Bible study, that proves that I am loved and there just might be something out there other than stars and molten lava on dried-up planets.

  • I need a battery for my brain.

Without that battery I cannot create the jolt which stimulates new ideas rather than pumping out all the training of my youth.

  • And God knows, I need a battery for my body.

Often the fuel I send to my cells better prepares me for a nap than a walk.

It only took them ten minutes to give my car the boost it needed to be a car again.

It made me wonder what I could do with ten minutes.

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Appraise

dictionary with letter A

Ap·praise:(v)assess the value or quality of.

I was nineteen years old and I had a great idea–at least, I thought it was a great idea.

My mother and father ran a loan company in our little town and in the basement of the structure, there were slabs of marble used for flooring and trimming. Apparently they were left over from when the building was constructed and placed down there because no one knew what to do with them.

The marble was beautiful, but terribly heavy.

My wife and I decided to bring up five huge pieces–because we knew they had to be worth a lot of money. As a matter of fact, we confirmed this by calling a local store which dealt in such commodities and asking what these units were worth.

Our minds were boggled by how expensive marble was, so we figured we would bring up five slabs, and probably take care of our budget for the next six months. Who knows? Maybe a year.

We didn’t think of getting them appraised before making the arduous journey of carrying them upstairs. So much to our chagrin, even though the marble pieces were very expensive at one time, somebody had determined that this particular design was outdated.

We even carried one of them across town to an actual dealer, who agreed that it was quite lovely, but that he had no use for it. When I complained, stating that the marble was just as valuable as it once was, he replied, “It’s not what the marble’s worth. It’s what people will pay for it.”

I never forgot that.

Without becoming too philosophical, let me say that we live in an age when we appraise human value, human life and even human interaction as priceless.

Yet when it comes right down to it, what are we really willing to pay to see other people secure, content, safe and happy?

It’s all too cheap.

And I would like to be part of a movement that reappraises human beings from conception to death with a more realistic price tag, which could actually be followed up with legitimate concern.

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Apparition

dictionary with letter A

Apparition (n.) a remarkable thing that makes a sudden appearance, especially a ghost.

I believe in ghosts.

Not the cloudy, smoky spirits of souls who have gone on to their reward or retribution. I’m talking about the ghosts of bad ideas, inclinations and fallacies that possessed our world in the past, and now have come to haunt us in the present.

  • Sometimes I just wish we could come up with new bad ideas.
  • Sometimes I just wish there was something new.

But instead we have the poltergeist of previous ridiculous concepts rising up from the grave, where we thought we buried it, only to spook us once again.

We don’t have new scandals. We have the spirit of Richard Nixon and Watergate infesting the present bodies of our politicians, making them do the same stupid mistakes he tried to pull off, which ended up with his destruction.

We don’t have music born of the spirituality and emotions of our own generation, but rather, grave-robbers who go and dig up the tunes of those who are now decomposing.

We are continually vexed by the apparitions of past failures or the ongoing celebration of victories, where the band has already played and marched away.

We spend too much time celebrating the past, forgetting the prejudice, disease and dumbness that prevailed.

I believe in ghosts because we refuse to inter the past.

So we just keep living this stuff over and over again … like a bunch of tales from the crypt.

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Apparent

dictionary with letter A

Apparent (adj.)1. clearly seen or understood; obvious. 2. seeming real, but not necessarily so.

All of our eyeballs have been blurred, leaving our vision tainted.

Perhaps it was the disappointment brought on by the tension of adolescence, or some hidden prejudice inserted into our thinking by well-meaning parents.

It might have been high expectation which was dashed and brought crashing to the earth by the flak of reality.

Somewhere along the line we began looking at the world through clouded lenses of bigoted conclusions.

Therefore what is apparent to one person is not equally as apparent to another. Matter of fact, we’ve developed a whole philosophical approach to the issue, insisting that we’re all quite different, and in our difference we find our “special purpose.”

Yet it doesn’t occur to us that if we all have different views of what is necessary, beautiful and spiritual, we’re more likely to collide into each other in the dark than to embrace each other in the light.

I do think it’s important that we come to some common ground on what is apparent, and even if we don’t completely understand it, submit to the wisdom of some very essential precepts:

1. We are not here alone.

In other words, we cannot live our lives as if there are no other human beings, and trying to pursue our goals without a belief in a Creator can be more frustrating than enriching.

2. The truth will make you free.

Lying is a detour which takes you through town, past the beautiful houses, but always ends up at the city dump. No one ever gets away with lying–and truthfully, the longer the deceit is disguised, the worse the retribution.

3. Miracles are God’s business, but talent is mine.

There is no replacement for ability applied with hard work. Those who peddle shortcuts, easy diet plans and get-rich schemes may be the closest thing we will ever see to flesh-and-blood satans.

There are things which are apparent. If we agree, we can begin to pull together instead of pushing and shoving each other. But to get this done, we must stop believing that the Earth is a series of human islands instead of a continent of brothers and sisters.

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