Thursday, February 4, 2010

Imagination.... a made-up mind

Meet Karson. He's got a lesson to teach.

Karson is a cutie. A tiny thing in a three year old body, still shroud in clothes measured for 18 month olds. He was still two when this happened. He may be young, but he has a vocabulary that is astounding.

He loves words. He loves sentences. He loves putting them together. He'll tell you something in one sentence, and then tell you the same thing again in another using different words for the things he's just told you about. He can literally carry a conversation quite impressively well with adult men. He's hilarious. And a fun little man to watch in action. 

Okay now.... now how do I tell this? How do I start to get to my point?

Keep Karson in mind. Pause his story for a minute. Let me retrack a sec and tell you about Stacy.

Stacy divorced a dozen years ago and hasn't dated since. Until just recently. She's falling quickly for this new man she's met. And with her fall, because of her uncertainty, she has new fear. Her fear in the last couple of weeks has been developing into panic.

Steve hadn't called her since Friday. It was Sunday when she called to tell me. By Tuesday she couldn't stand it any longer. She stopped by his office to see him. To ask why? What's up? What's he thinking? What's he doing? Does he not want to do this anymore?

The story's complicated. Too long to tell. But seriously, his excuse sounded excusable. I had told her earlier that it probably was. He was overwhelmed. Over burdened. Over stressed. Over everything about all sorts of things. And he was just trying to work some things out.

Evidently her stop helped refresh him, uplift him, lessen his load. By that afternoon, he was back to his normal. He called so much, in fact, that by Friday afternoon she confronted him again. Wondering how he could bounce back so quickly to normal as if nothing had happened after a whole weekend of cold? This time, without meaning to, she heavied his load.

The last three weeks have been back and forth like this. And mostly this is the problem. Her mind's imagination. Her wonder of what might be happening when she doesn't hear from him. The scenarios her mind makes up for what might be happening. Her speculation.

It's like when my son fails to text me back when I've texted him. I'll allow him the time that I think it should take... and when I don't hear in the properly time allotted, I'll text again. If I still don't hear, I'll call. If he doesn't answer?................. I start to panic. My mind quickly decides why. He's probably doing something he shouldn't. Or he's somewhere he's not supposed to be. Or he's had a wreck, and it has to have killed him, because if he were conscious he would have called. I mourn his death. Picture the family and friends that will soon be coming by. Visualize the funeral. And............................ I make myself miserable! I'm a mess when he calls. And mad, by then! Poor thing. It's really because of nothing he did, more simply it's because of where all my mind went because he didn't.

That's what Stacey is doing with Steve. And it's not healthful or joyful for either of them.

Back to Karson. He called his "Honey" (his grandmother). While on the phone he decided to tell her a story. One he made up. But not made up in advance. He was making up this story as he was talking to her. It went something like this....

"Honey, I was walking in the woods. I was walking in the woods down a trail. And as I was walking a fox came out from the woods. Then, Honey, not just one fox, but so many foxes came that they were surrounding me................ Mama! Mama! I need you, mama. Come hold me, mama. Mama! Come hold me!"

At this point my sister (his "Honey") questioned him, "Karson? Are you okay, Karson?.... Karson!" She was on the phone, so she couldn't see what was happening. 

Karson continues his urgent plea with his mom, "Mama! Come hold me! I need you to come hold me. Mama!"

Honey hears his fear and so asks him, "What's wrong, Karson....?" But before he answers and as he continues to plead with his mom she figures it out. "Karson? Are you afraid of the foxes, Karson? It's not real. It's just your made up story. There are no foxes around you really." But.... he still needed his mama. :)

How often are we like that? We make up things in our own minds to make us fearful about. It's not true. It's just a made-up place that our visual and imaginations took us off to.

That's what Abraham did. When he journeyed in the land that God had told him to go to that He had promised him. Abraham was fearful of the Pharaohs in the land. Sarah, his wife, was beautiful. Abraham was afraid that the kings would put him to death in order to take her into their kingdom. So before they even left, he made an agreement with Sarah to not tell them that she was his wife, but to tell them instead that she was his sister (she actually was his half-sister.. but yes, his wife too!) whenever they came to a new land.

I had been studying this (about Abraham) when I heard what Karson did. And after I'd talked to Stacy about what she'd imagined about Steve. I loved the parallels between the three pictures. It's amazing to me though how Abraham could believe and have faith that God would give him the son that He'd promised him... but that he was afraid that the people in the land that he was going into would kill him. His fear blinded him to see the logic. He couldn't have a son.... if they (to get him out of the way) put him to death. :)

During this same time of pondering all three of the above stories a friend of mine posted something on his Facebook status. He said that he had had to break up a wrestling match between two of his sons that morning. One a 4 year old. The other 2. After breaking up their madness he asked them what in the world had them in such a tizzy that they had to fight like that? One son said that the other son had stolen his imaginary chicken and wouldn't give it back to him!

How hilarious is that! They were fighting over something that they'd made up in their minds! I laughed when I saw it and asked if they couldn't have just made up another one so that they both could have one, therefore leaving them with nothing at all to cause such a fuss over?

All of these examples may sound so silly, but aren't we all like that? Don't our imaginations and made-up wonder give us grief and often get us into trouble? Next time your mind starts to wonder, think of the imaginary chicken and ask yourself: Is this real... or, have I just made my mind up? :) Don't fight or be frustrated or fearful over something merely imagined!

1 comment:

  1. I found a verse that fits so perfectly. From out of the mouth of Job himself, “When I think about this I am terrified and trembling seizes my body” ~ Job 21:6.