Did you ever have a single event somehow direct the way you live your life and think? An epiphany.
I distinctly remember one of my biggest epiphanies. Maggie, Amber, and I went to Lilith Fair in Northern VA. Lilith Fair was basically a big concert with a bunch of different female artists, led by Sarah McLaughlin. Anyway, thats not really the point, but it was a great concert. We are standing in line to get in and its hot and the line is long. We wait and wait and wait. I notice as we slowly move along, some people are not in line, but going in a different way. Line cutters, I think to myself. Yet we stay in line and finally get in towards the gate and we realize - there's another gate. Another way in. I chastise myself on the inside for acting like a sheep. I realized at that point in my life, that I didn't want to be a sheep. Sheep are stupid. Sheep are smelly. (God does call us sheep many times in the Bible, and I agree, that yes, we are in definite need of the shepherding of God.)
I think that experience made me question a lot of how and why we do things like we do them. The biggest result, by far, is in our parenting choices, environmental issues, personal health, politics, and medical choices (or lack of using western medicine.) Sometimes going against the mainstream was not the right decision, other times, it was the right decision, and many times, I don't know if its going to make a difference or not.
One quick example was seminary. We lived in this bigger complex of fellow seminarians (and waaaaaaaay too many toddlers for the liking of a childless couple!). It was far enough from campus, that you didn't want to walk, so everyone drove. The crazy thing is was that no one drove together. 50 cars would leave at 8:50 for their 9:00 o'clock classes. Rich's attempts to get people carpool didn't catch on. So we thought, this is silly. We moved. We could now easily walk to campus (and were free from 50 toddlers peering into our windows...I like toddlers much more now that I have one by the way.)It was one of the best decisions we ever made. For everyone driving their separate cars, perhaps, it was a justified choice, but perhaps, it was a sheep decision. That's just what we Americans do. I'm hoping now that gas is $4/gallon, carpooling has caught on down there....crazy Southerners.
But then again, I don't want to get too caught up in doing things differently, that I actually do harm to myself or others. Balance. Its always a tough line.
So thats what has been rolling around in my head for the good half of the evening. It rolls around in my head quite often in fact, and now, its a blog. How crazy is that?