Saturday, September 26, 2015

Football Counter-Programming 2015--Week 4


Welcome back again everyone--to another attempt at Football Counter-Programming!

How much time did you spend between last Saturday and now thinking about football? Be honest! I'm assuming you thought about it on Sunday . . . and again on Monday night . . . and probably once more on Thursday night. Isn't that enough time devoted to football thoughts? Can't we all get together for a bit right now and think about something else?

But what shall we think about today? Let's see what the Log Lady has to say and maybe we can go from there?

Hmmm. I think we will tackle the topic of sadness today, since that is what the Log Lady seems to be focusing on. And so I chose the image of Urban Meyer eating Sad Pizza a few years ago.

The Log Lady is giving a grim warning that the sadness will end at our time of death. And she is certainly right about that--struggle against that truth though we might. But that is a very pessimistic view of the world. (A view that is entirely within character on a show such as Twin Peaks.)

But I don't want to promote such a depressing weltanschaung. I want people to think and act more positively, rejecting the belief that this world is only about sadness. We can see so many wonderful things around us. But we have to try to see it.

This state of mind and this set of beliefs is rooted in my Christian faith--and it is something that I aim for . . . and something I fail to achieve quite often. But I was recently encouraged by listening to the Fresh Air interview between Terri Gross and Lutheran pastor Nadia Bolz-Weber.

Her approach towards the Lutheran Christian faith was filled with humor and humility, long on hope and effort and short on definitive authoritative answers. Instead, she focused strongly on a confidence in God's unwavering love for us--regardless of how we fall short.

How can we feel sad if this is the message we hold?

But many of us do feel sad. And the sadness is rooted in a personal dissatisfaction that seems hard to shake. And this dissatisfaction comes from our culture. We are told to do more, to be more, to see how others do and be and measure our own understanding of success against others--to see that success and grab it.

It is a result of the freedoms and the affluence that we are blessed with in the United States. We believe that good enough is never enough. If you think Good Enough is  okay, then you are a slacker and you are not living up to your potential. If you are content, then you are lazy.

But . . . don't we see people who seem content amid the turmoil and wonder what do they know? Aren't we envious of those who are calm and seem to know themselves? Don't we want to reach a place where we know our edges and we stay within them? And when we don't . . . doesn't that bring sadness?

So much of today's bickering and political fighting comes from well-meaning (some of them, I assume) people who are trying--in their own spiritually-interpreted way--to draw some boundaries. For many, the freedoms and opportunities of this country seem like dangerous zones of confusion. They want to put a wall around what is understood and stay secure within those definitions of right, wrong, good, bad. They want to eliminate the unfamiliar, because they don't want to live there.

Those that are calm and secure . .  . I think they are willing to live in their areas . . . and they are willing to let others live in their areas. That security within oneself is the key to calm. You center YOURSELF. You know where YOU are. And you don't worry so much about everyone else. That gives you peace and diminishes sadness.

So . . . those are my thoughts on that. What do you think? Leave me some feedback in the comments. Am I full of shit? Tell me.

Until next Saturday . . . remember: no one cares if your team's kicker can't consistently make field goals beyond 35 yards.

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