Monday, April 26, 2010

... on escaping reality

Do you find yourself thinking “If only I could run away, every problem, every trial, and every test will disappear and fade into the abyss”?


(Okay, I may have stole that format from Rob Bell, but hey – there’s nothing new under the sun, right?!)

I wish that we could just say, “I don’t feel like working on this particular area of my life right now, nor ever, see you later!”  It often times seems like escaping reality would be the answer to certain problems or situations.  Nevertheless, we still have to confront problems and issues in our lives on a perpetual basis – God won’t let us just fade away into the background.  And, if we don’t deal with it right then and there, having that burden to carry with us wherever we go only makes the burden heavier.  Then the problem/issue comes back at us in an inflated manner.  Then, like a boomerang, it hits us when we least expect it.

I was recently watching the movie entitled Up In the Air, George Clooney’s character, Ryan Bingham, teaches seminars on emptying out one’s baggage.  No, seriously – that’s what his character was teaching at these seminars!  He preaches that everyone should relieve one’s life of excess physical and emotional baggage.  If only that were the case, then we would have more time to focus on ourselves and our desires and…

How selfish!!

If we really practiced that we wouldn’t feel a responsibility to our family and friends and ultimately loving others how God really wants us to.  So, we come back to our original thought… Would it really be easier just to escape reality?

There is beauty in pain. 

I remember someone once saying to me that you have to take the bad in with the good.  It’s about the whole package.  Even though we all might have our negative qualities, I’m pretty sure we have positive qualities as well.  And, there’s always redemption, right?! So, even though we may be feeling like there are more bads than goods we have to remember that we are worth more than that.

One of my favorite bands is Modest Mouse.  They have a song called “The View” off of their album Good News for People Who Love Bad News.  This song always presents a challenge to me when listening to it.  The following is just the chorus of the song.

As life gets longer, awful feels softer
And it feels pretty soft to me
And if it takes s*** to make bliss
Well, I feel pretty blissfully

If life’s not beautiful without the pain
Well, I’d just rather never ever even see beauty again
Well, as life gets longer, awful feels softer
And it feels pretty soft to me

I love how a simple song from a (non-Christian) rock band can put things in perspective.

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