Levels of obedience

We are all probably familiar with the 10 Commandments. Whether we believe that they are from God, guidelines to a better life, or a nuisance is up to each of us. As I thought about the commandments God has given us I realized none of us are on the same path. There are at least four different levels of obedience. Let’s use the example of taking cookies out of a cookie jar to demonstrate each level.

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Sometimes the answer is “Cowboy Up”

I believe God hears and answers prayers. I firmly believe this and can’t be swayed. However, the answer may not come as expected. Sometimes we get those sweet tender mercies. And sometimes we are asked to “cowboy up.” To cowboy up is a phrase we use a lot in Wyoming. It means to “make a determined effort to overcome a formidable obstacle” (Google Dictionary). When the answer comes as the latter, we can still take comfort and learn a couple of things.

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Broken Table and Broken Dreams

I finally conceded I needed to give the table away. It is a big (by today’s standards) kitchen table probably built in the 1940’s. All wood, it is heavy and cumbersome. Not really designed for today’s compact modern world. But for me giving it away was a difficult decision because it represented a dream unfulfilled. Although I have lived long enough to know the importance of plan B’s in my life, giving up on a long held dream is not an easy thing to do. I took comfort in the fact that the table not only represented a plan B in my life, but it must have also been similar for my grandma nearly 55 years earlier. We are connected with this broken table and broken dreams. At least, that’s what I tell myself.

Table with the three leaves leaning against the wall
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As for me, I believe there’s a heaven

You probably remember this as well as I do. At the start of the United State’s lockdown to “flatten the curve” when we all started quarantining in our homes a few celebrities put out a video of them singing John Lennon’s Imagine. While the song has a pretty tune, it did not bring me any comfort. No offense to any Lennon fans out there but imagining “there’s no heaven” is not a comforting thought. Especially at the beginning of my first pandemic. For me, it is actually a depressing thought.

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