What Wondrous Love

Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.

John 15:13 (English Standard Version)

Today, it’s all about love.

Of course we know that it’s Valentine’s Day. The stores have been telling us that since well before Christmas.

Today, the greeting card and candy industries, along with florists around the world, thank you for their

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Please don’t tell me that you forgot…the stores are still open…get thee out there.

I think I got it right this year. As I’m writing this, I’m on a second version of a project. Not to worry, she’ll see the project before she sees this post…unless I scrap it all together and run out for candy.

I remember the times of my youth, finding the “perfect” Valentines to give my classmates, and never getting the really, really expensive ones.

When our boys were young it was all about the super hero cards.

Now we’re bombarded for two months (at least) with everything that could remotely begin to resemble a Valentine’s product.

It’s not just that Christmas is too commercialized, everything is.

But, not all is lost. Lots of chocolate will be on sale tomorrow.

Today is not Valentine’s Day alone. On the Western Christian church calendar, today is also Ash Wednesday.

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent and represents the 46 days before Easter. Traditionally 40 of those days are fasting days if the six Sundays are counted as “feast days.”

Traditions among churches vary, and while I have a Certificate in Christian Education, I am no theologian.

But what greater expression of love than the love shown by Christ as he went to the cross?

Lent is a time of remembrance, of preparation, of preparing for the journey to the cross.

Sometimes our daily snark doesn’t always fit the theme of the post. Work with me here.

Over the years the churches I have attended have approached Lent in different manners.

When we lived in the Washington, DC area our church chose one year to pass out nails and encouraged us each to carry them with us throughout Lent. I wore mine on a string around my neck.

Let’s just say I had a bit of explaining to do when it set off the metal detectors when I had to be at the White House for a meeting.

I digress.

As of this writing, I’ve not yet chosen to give anything up for Lent. I may. But, let’s be honest, when you try to follow a primal eating plan, you’ve already given up a good bit.

Again, I digress.

Whatever your faith, or your faith tradition, a time of reflection, a time of self-denial can be a healthy thing.

It’s a day of love, a wondrous love indeed.


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Just a Bit of Fun

Unfortunately, many people do not consider fun an important item on their daily agenda. For me, that was always a high priority in whatever I was doing.

American general, pilot, and the first test pilot to break the sound barrier, Chuck Yeager, was born on this day in 1923 in Myra, West Virginia.

You have to believe that Chuck Yeager had some fun with what he was doing. What a remarkable career.

I’m not sure I could withstand the type of fun that Yeager had. Forget breaking the sound barrier, I don’t even do roller coasters.

That doesn’t mean that there’s not a good bit of fun to be had in the things that I’m doing.

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As much as I gripe about it, and struggle with it, writing can be, and is fun for me. Don’t get me wrong. It’s a lot of work and I struggle with it daily. But it’s also fun when I get published, or get something posted and I see how people react.

In full disclosure, sometimes the fun comes in posting something for no other purpose than waiting for that reaction.

I find fun as well in the theatre work that I do. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be doing it.

Granted, sometimes I think I may be having too much fun, if you get my drift.

At least that’s what my calendar tells me.

Then there’s the day job. It’s not always fun. It’s not frequently fun. But, some days it can be, and I’ll hang on to that.

It is, after all, still necessary so that I can have fun elsewhere.

As I keep seeing the hiring notices I must admit to being a bit sad that I won’t be having fun working at the amusement park this year.

It’s all part of that Get Things Done theme. See, if I want to get things done, like live until next year, I can’t work seven days a week.

Don’t get me wrong. I loved the job at the park. I just can’t do it right now. Well, I could if I gave up the writing and the acting.

Giving up the day job is not a current option.

I mean, I don’t know how many times I’ve given Publisher’s Clearinghouse directions to our house, but they never show.

What’s the fun in that?

Your definition of fun is likely different than mine, and that’s okay.

Likewise, you may also have a job where the opportunities for fun are few and far between.

Then again, it’s what you make it.

I once worked with a woman who was married to a mortician. He had a wicked sense of humor.

I know if you’re reading this, you likely have struggles and challenges as well. Maybe not huge ones at the moment, but you’ve been there, and we’ll all be there again.

I’m inclined to look at these moments and find the fun where I can.

I am reminded that twenty-seven years ago this month, I was in the midst of radiation treatments following my cancer surgery.

That was very not fun.

I got through it. And I’ve had a lot of fun in the years since.

Life hasn’t all been a picnic. As I’m writing this on a rainy Saturday morning, it’s far from picnic weather.

But we learn to keep going. We’ll see blue skies and warm weather again. Maybe not as soon as we’d like, but they’ll be here.

Along the way we’ll deal with the struggles, and the pains in the behind (both people and circumstance), and we’ll look for a little fun.

Or, a lot of fun.

I’m planning on it.

It’s on my agenda.

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Cover Photo by Kaushik Panchal on Unsplash