I heard this story in Litchfield, South Carolina.
A little boy watches a crabber.
The crabber catches crabs and puts 'em in a big bucket with no lid.
The little boy asks, "Mister, aren't you afraid the crabs will crawl out of your bucket?"
The crabber explains, "Don't worry, son, for as soon as one of the crabs gets close to the top, the rest of the crabs reach up and pull it back down."
I feel it, Lord.
It's a dark conspiracy.
They're trying to wear me down; attempting a cumulative effect.
Bantering and moaning.
Complaining and criticizing.
Sooooooo negative about everything everywhere with everyone - like bad leaven mixing in to make it worse.
Miserable people dedicated to making everyone everywhere about everything as miserable as they are.
Yet, as I move to You and You move to me because I move to You when You move to me, I'm released from the...
And the more I move to You and You move to me because I move to You when You move to me, they can't pull me back down to their...
I don't feel empathy for the miserably pejorative anymore, Lord.
The more that I move to You and You move to me because I move to You when You move to me, I don't feel or understand or relate to their...
Moving to You and You moving to me because I move to You when You move to me, I'm no longer stuck in the bottom of the bucket and no one has the muscle to pull me back down because I've moved to You and You've moved to me because I've moved to You when You've moved to me; and I just can't get/be as miserable as...
I don't know what it's like to be captive anymore to/by...
Yes, I feel sympathy for those who are pulled down or stay down because they don't move to You as You move to them and...
I've even tried to feel as miserable as...because that's what they want for...but I can't when I move to You and You move to me because...
I can't help them; and they can't help themselves until they move to You as You move to them because...
Ever since starting to move to You as You move to me because I move to You when You move to me,...
I can't explain it, Lord.
I feel it.
It's a choice.
Move to You and they can't pull me/us back to the bottom of...
I want You for the rest of the crabs.
I know You release crabs like me when we move to You as You move to us because...
You said, "I will set you free!"
It's/You're the truth.
Strange thing about parables and poetry and even prayers.
Ya get it or ya don't.
Reminds me of Him.
We get Him or we...stay in the bottom of the bucket.
Attention all crabs!
Blessings and Love!
Crabs don`t sound good.
I guess that must be why I go to Church on Sunday and go home after. And don`t come back until the Next Sunday.
Tell you the truth Pastor if I had to put up with what you put up with. I would be in Jail for Whipping some body. That`s why I just go on Sunday. Amen God Bless
Truth is, my brother, when we are called to something, He provides the wherewithal. For example, your faith encourages mine!
forgive me, but you might like an excerpt from my reflection last Sunday (great minds alike):
Let’s say now you’re easily agitated. This old world is getting you down. People are getting on your nerves. Life tastes bitter. So you decide it is time to get spiritually fit.
Let’s call it “baby on the plane spirituality.”
Let me explain.
We were flying back from San Francisco. Five and a half hour red-eye flight. Cramped, uncomfortable, full plane, fist-fights over space in the overhead compartments. And a crying baby only an aisle and a seat away from me. Crying jags, screaming, flailing, parents doing their best to keep the baby quiet, but no luck. When it comes to screaming babies, babies win.
Now, I had a choice about this baby, and fortunately I was reading my copy of The Imitation of Christ, this classic religious devotional.
This devotional reminded me that if you are in bad place, you will react bad. If you are in a good place, you can react good. The real question isn’t what you experience but how you experience it. Not what it does, but where are you?
The Law of Attraction:
You are what you pay attention to
You are what you love, you are what you look for…
Now, my devotional taught me how if you look for yourself, sadly, you will find yourself, to your own ruin. Better to seek God in Jesus.
It also implied this lovely barometer for measuring faith:
‘if you are agitated by others, you reveal you have no foundation in Christ”
Why choose to make it worse? Why let other people bug you? Why let the disturbances, the annoyances, the sufferings, the hurts, the betrayals define your soul and dictate your behavior? Who masters you? Embrace your sufferings.
Baby on the plane.
Now, I could have been like the fellow across the aisle who, denied his nap, was getting more and more irritated, more and more agitated. You could see he almost wanted to shake the child. That’s real nice, that’ll help.
Or, as I read in my book, I could use the ‘baby on the plane’ as a means of nurturing my faith and cultivating my spirituality.
Now we see though a glass darkly, but then we shall see face to face.
In this life we are forced to live by faith.
-- Elton Trueblood
Why should I be bothered? It’s just a little baby. The parents were trying their best, but it’s a little baby. I also didn’t notice anybody offer to help the parents, including myself.
Sure she didn’t have much self-discipline, but she was a little baby, not a grown-up who is supposed to practice self-discipline (though too often acts worse than an infant).
I saw her and I thought of her dependence, her helplessness. She’s little baby. Plus her forthrightness in loudly expressing her neediness. She was scared. She was hungry. She didn’t understand. She didn’t know she was on a plane. She didn’t even know she was bound for Philadelphia, and that will disturb most of us.
Maybe the baby on the plane really is all of us. Is me?
The baby on the plane became for me an opportunity to decide either to get angrier and angrier or turn it around it into a blessing, a lesson, a moment of grace, a reminder that peace isn’t something that one receives from the outside but peace arrives from a gentle soul inside.
Good luck looking for peace from your situation, from the outside world, from all your fellow airplane travelers coughing, getting up into the aisle, lowering their seat into your chin.
The Law of Point of View:
Point of View says more about you than about the other person
And because of that baby on a plane, I came to a whole new definition of faith:
Christianity at its essence is the gift to make all things a Godly good.
Christianity at its essence makes all things a Godly good. Even screaming babies, even disappointments, even tragedies, even death, even evil.
Thank you, brother.
BTW, Groote aka Kempis has been resurrected in my spirit since my time with Eugene in October 2011.
Vacationing in Myrtle Beach several years ago I came upon a T-shirt in a window (MB is the cheap T-shirt capital of the world, is it not?). I had to resist the urge to buy a couple dozen for folks back at our church. The front of the shirt declared:
"CHARTER MEMBER OF THE PISS AND MOAN ABOUT EVERYTHING CLUB"
Reminds me of the sermon I did way back when I was a seminarian. I compared Christians to crustaceans. Both have ability to regenerate/be regenerated. But the claws crabs and lobsters regrow are always less than the ones the replace, they're never as good as the original. On the other hand, the Father is gracious to make us better than new in Christ! Still, many seem to prefer simply to be crabs rather than Christians...
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