Thursday, May 17, 2012

Can You Believe This?

Could it be that I have more than my share of those kinds of days, or does everyone feel that way?
Every six months, I go in for a routine checkup, and my doctor always orders lab work a few days before my appointment. I’d just come out of the lab and I was a bit unsettled. After all these years, blood tests still make me nervous. I decided I’d stop and get a cappuccino before going to the office, a little treat for being such a brave boy while getting stabbed by the vampires.
I pulled into the parking lot of a convenience store, but as I was preparing to exit my vehicle, which had already drawn attention because it’s a noisy little buggy – not because it’s supped up, but because it’s old and worn out – I dropped my keys between the seat and the console. With a Dodge Neon, this is no small problem. The chasm is deep but narrow, and, like a black hole things go in but they don’t come out. At the bottom of the canyon, my keys mocked me.  I snaked my hand down into the crevice but managed only to brush the edge of the key ring. Refusing to be defeated by the got-you-now engineering joke, I shoved my hand deeper. The horn started honking and the lights began to flash. My keys were still lodged deep in the black hole, though I’d managed to hit the panic button on the remote. Now I really had everyone’s attention. My dilemma had escalated to the point of fight or flight. Deciding to fight, I jumped from the car, jerked open the backdoor, and threw myself onto the floorboard where I made a few moves that would make a seasoned contortionist envious. Somehow I managed to get the keys and shut down the spectacle.
Walking nonchalantly past the snickering crowd of onlookers, I made my way into the store and went directly to the bathroom. I needed to wash my face and hands. Anyway while in the room of rest, I noticed a sign fastened to the stall wall, which read: Rent movies here for $1.00, but I ignored it. It seemed like a good deal, but I didn’t plan to stay that long.
Back at the office, each time I would take a sip of cappuccino, since the vent hole was improperly installed, the cup made a noise. Perhaps I was giddy from loss of blood coupled with a shot of caffeine, but as I read the brand name of the cup it occurred to me that I was actually whistling Dixie.
A few days later, being scheduled for a book signing during an open-house gala at the library, I drove to Chelsea, Oklahoma. Admittedly, not knowing how long it would take me to get there, I arrived a bit early. However, the library had provided a nice table for me. It would take a while to get set up. Ten minutes later, I sat behind the table, feeling a little out of place. I usually appreciate libraries being quiet, a bit of a rarity these days, but hearing particles of dust collide with the floor was a bit more than I was prepared for. I checked my watch. Only three hours to go. Later, I heard a train whistle, and I imagined Johnny Cash’s inspiration behind, Folsom Prison.
I’m just kidding around, about the library anyway. Actually I had a great time. Everyone treated as if I was an old friend, a respect that humbled me. Being in Chelsea reminded me just how much of a treasure small-town America really is. I grew up in a one. At least Sand Springs used to be.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Do You Believe in Ghosts?

Do you believe in the existence of ghosts, spirits, Рto slip into a clich̩ Рthings that go bump in the night?
While cruising the internet, I ran across several articles concerning the spirit world and the typical Western-World view of such things, and the process reignited a subject of interest that I had not given thought to for some time. People in the Western Civilization have a hard time thinking about, much less talking about anything that they – I want to say: Cannot see, hear, or touch, but reports of such sensory occurrences in the spirit world are not uncommon – cannot physically quantify. And yet, just about everyone I know, if I can get them to talk about the subject, admits to having had at least one supernatural experience.  Here are a few of my experiences:
This is an especially puzzling concept when it comes to Christianity. As Christians, we believe in the existence of God, and the fact that He, or a part of Him came to earth as Jesus to save us from our sins. And the Bible is full of references to the spirit world, and to its inhabitants, both good and bad.  However, any mention of ghosts or spirits among Christians is viewed with scorn and ridicule. In my opinion, the sole purpose of God’s Holy Word, the Bible, is to instruct us, to teach us how to live our lives in this temporary world, so that we can be on the right side of things – God’s side – in the eternal world of the spirit.
What caused this seemingly paradoxical Western-World view?
I believe it is due to the practical and pragmatic attitudes passed down to us by our ancestors.
What do you think?
I’d love to know your thoughts on the subject. Please leave a comment, or email me at