When a person is lost the simple solution to such a problem is to ask
for directions. But what if there is no one around to provide these
directions? What does one do when there are no maps, no road signs, no
answers, no technology in existence to provide any direction in a life
filled with endless turns, highest of hills, and the sharpest of curves?
C.S. Lewis wrote something that troubles me today now that I can truly relate. He wrote:
"Why is He so present a commander in our time of prosperity and so very absent a help in time of trouble?"
"I tried to put some of these thoughts to C. this afternoon. He
reminded me that the same thing seems to have happened to Christ:'Why
hast thou forsaken me? I know. Does that make it easier to understand?"
-C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed.
While standing before my brother's grave, I found myself to be lost in
this life even after asking for some direction time and time again.
I bent down and wrote H.L.S. with a small rock and drew the Square and
Compass beneath the letters. In my mind, it was a way of telling him
that with both - his advice he preached to me and with the lessons that
I learned - in my heart I will be a man just like him. And yet I'm at a
I realize that not many will ever understand such pains in life so I
never expected many to care or quite get the simple fact that an open
wound still resides and the fear and depression that such a wound
produces; nor the small epiphanies that come to mind and the personal
life discoveries that are made during constant thought and dwelling
over this kind of change in life. The typical cliche, "That's life", is
often repeated without much thought made by the repeater. It is a
reminder but such cliches are just as useless as when they were first
spoken. To each the personal experience of life differs.
I suffered the effects of being the big spender. I look down that road
with fond memories of the times carelessly spent in stores and car lots
being that compulsive/impulsive buyer. To some this kind of spending
would be horrific and today it frightens me as well, but I was once one
of those that such carefree spending - thousands gone in a few hours -
was a kind of drug that gave me the ultimate high. Although I look down
that road with fond memories, I feel sheer terror and disbelief. I now
understand the statement that my brother made to me a few years ago:
"At least I'm not head over hills in bills." He told me to payoff the
bills, get a place of my own, this is what I needed to do with my life.
Down that road lies that memory along with the feeling of regret and
embarrassment. I had the nicer vehicles, the best computers, all of the
latest gadgets; but he had something far more - priceless- that I
didn't see at that time... I now see that I was not impressive but only
a fool. Down that road resides a mere fool that hoarded over priced
junk that has cost me much suffering today. May that fool be now dead.
I have been a fearful child, one that was afraid of his own shadow.
While reminiscing down that road, I see a shy coward too afraid to
leave the comfort zone. I remained dedicated and only dedicated to the
job while the stress of the work worked my health so that the doctor
can prescribe more drugs to feed my habit of working and spending. My
brother kept preaching to me that I needed an outlet, I needed to take
time away from work and get out to do more relaxing activities. I was
too afraid to listen. The night life was evil, any strong drink was
forbidden, and staying at home was safe. Down that road resides a
foolish coward slowly committing suicide. The health risks of such
stress is not worth the one life that was freely given - one chance and
little time before it passes. My ears now hear the meaning of my
brother's lectures that were given the entire time that I traveled that
And here I am, at a crossroad seeking direction. But what if the
directions were already given? What if I failed to fully grasp those
directions, forgotten them perhaps? To proceed forward in life one must
know from whence he came...From the previous roads taken I learned that
I failed to accept any direction, thus the negative outcomes. Perhaps
the directions have been with me all along and I've been too blind and
stubborn to have followed them. I am the blind that lead myself into a
Change is inevitable no matter how much we dislike it. We can never
foresee the events in our life until the time elapses and the
inevitable change unfolds before our fearful eyes. Time will doctor us
so that we can move on to the next event. Each of us handles change
differently as our lives differ; it's unique to us all.
I have my directions, I remembered whence I came. I've been in this
ditch far too long, it's time to move on. It's time to embrace change
and become a better man. It's time to make my brother proud.