EmPulse for Week of February 7, 2011
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons— for you are crunchy and good with ketchup
Dragons…, curious creatures to be sure. A friendly dragon. Hummm. Oxymoron? Dragons are mythological beings from an earlier era; never actually existed. Or did they? Surely there is nothing to worry about today; they’re no longer around. Are they? Are you sure? These thoughts flashed through my mind as I read the bumper sticker on the car in front of me. Do not mess in the affairs of dragons—for you are crunchy and good with ketchup. Not sure I like that chewy-crunchy part. Ouch! Guess I know what’s for dinner.
The point of the message stuck with me. DO NOT MESS WITH THINGS THAT DO NOT CONCERN YOU; ESPECIALLY THINGS THAT SEE YOU AS DINNER. OR TOAST. Yet that is precisely what many of us are called to confront, challenges that are greater than we can contend with, ordeals that might eat us alive or fry our energy to embers. Some of us plunge in head first; others research the situation to death; still others shrink back, afraid of being wrong or failing. Besides, it’s none of our business. Leave well enough alone. Dragons are too dangerous.
There are many fire breathing situations in life that unnerve us to the core. Getting married. Getting married again. Promotions on the job. Being the person where the buck stops. Driving in Boston. Driving in Damascus. Living a life of deception. Having an inmost sin revealed. Control types. Passive aggressives (silent killers). Discovering cancer. Sooner or later each of us will come up against our dragon—that which we fear to face. It may swoop in out of nowhere, nostrils blazing; or it may slowly awaken within, creeping up on us, jaws agape, ready to devour.
How do we prepare for the attack of the dragon? If your overall attitude toward living is one of fear, nothing will change; a dragon attack will only amplify your fear and force an inner paralysis. If you maintain a laissez faire attitude toward life, you may not even recognize a dragon attack until it is too late. If you live at the edge, always going for it, always gaining the higher ground, you probably have your sword drawn already. But most of us are simply not expecting to be devoured by our dragon. We lie contentedly beside them.
Life is not a see what happens next affair. It is either a conscious decision to live vibrantly or an unconscious decision to resign one’s self to personal fatalism. We were not put on this earth to “get by.” Ergo, some simple recommendations—
1. Develop an honorable character. Having your sword at the ready still requires a skilled hand to wield it.
2. A Fire Proof Shield is necessary to buffet fiery dragon breath. Find what you need to guard your integrity and stay behind it…, all the time.
3. Surround yourself with fellow-warriors who do not share your strengths; most likely, they will not hold your weaknesses either. You dare not go up against a dragon alone.
4. Make decisions quickly. Most decisions need less deliberation than we think; still, some need to be discussed at length with someone, anyone, more experienced that you.
5. Learn from your mistakes & failures. DO NOT repeat them out of stupidity or precedent.
6. Generally speaking, dragons are creatures of evil. Live within the greatness of God and leave trails of His graciousness where you journey. If you get lost, your friends (& God) can find you.
We are each called to mess in the affairs of dragons every day. Get used to it. Guard yourself against becoming dinner (or toast). Slay the dragon.
Have a nice week,