It’s Monday, February 10th, 8:00 pm. Another weekend has passed–the second weekend of the second month of the year. I have been focusing much on how fast this year will fly. Because of this, I had planned on spending this weekend writing, reading, vision-casting, with maybe two excursions away from my castle: Academy Sports + Outdoors to buy a new elliptical on Saturday, and church on Sunday. I can be the ‘king of piddle’ so I must be decisively conscious of how I spend my time as my life is passing faster and faster. I have much urgency, my time is short–even if I am here on my ninetieth birthday and beyond–it won’t be enough.
I get home late from work on Friday, meet with one of my best bros-in-Jesus for about an hour. We discuss Abraham and Lot. Lot chose the best digs being the whole plain of the Jordan (see Gen. 13:10-11) and Abraham went on in faith that God had something greater for him. As the story proceeds, Lot gets into a pickle that produces a run for his life and everything he has, except his two daughters, is burned or turned to salt (poor, rubbernecking wife!) and ends up in a cave. His life fades off into who knows? When Abraham and Lot parted ways with Lot taking what “appeared” to be the best choice, Abraham continued on following God and he definitely made the best choice as he became a man that almost everyone knows something about, even if not of a Judeo-Christian background. Abraham is still discussed thousands of years later. Who talks much about Lot, if at all? This conversation helped me think several times over the weekend about the daily choices I make. Are they “Lot loser” or “Abraham accolade” decisions? Both can be discussed for a long time. I desire to make choices that will spur positive recollections of me someday when memorialized, and beyond. I must choose to be “Abraham-like” and do my best to avoid being “Lot-like.” Easy to profess, difficult to do.
I didn’t realize after my buddy left how this conversation would affect my weekend.
My wife comes home and our evening proceeds with the opening ceremony for the winter Olympics – snoozeville! After a while we stop and watch a show on Netflix. Soon a text comes in from our oldest daughter. Our three-year-old grandson is going to the hospital by ambulance. He’s been diagnosed with the flu. They live almost an hour and a half away. I’m concerned. We’re concerned. Our daughter keeps us updated via text as the evening proceeds. We are praying and many friends and family are joining with us. This has to be one of the biggest blessings from being part of the body (local fellowship/church) as you are never alone when the trial proceeds!
The next morning I get up early, text my daughter, and she shares that my grandson is sleeping but hasn’t improved. Her night was sleep-deprived with alarms of machines going off and the overall setting of a hospital, which is not conducive to rest. We end the conversation with her promising to let me know when anything changes. I go on with my morning studying from Numbers, writing a journal entry, praying–thoroughly enjoying my time. On Saturdays I often do this for hours and hours. Other days of the week are packed with work, classes, family, and the days get by me without this quantity of time happening. I consistently spend time daily in the Word, praying, writing, but not hours.
I take a break around 11:30am’ish and my wife causally states, “I’d like to go and help out with the kids (the other 5 grandchildren) since our grandson’s in the hospital. I think, O.k., this is great! I’ll have the whole day to write and do all that I had planned! I’m loving this idea of hers! My wife is uhmazzzing!! I casually ask, “You coming home later tonight, right?” I don’t want her gone all night. I’m a grown man and I don’t like to stay by myself if I don’t have to, I admit it! Plus, it’s Saturday night (wink, wink). “Well, no probably not. You’re coming with me right?” flies back across the net from her side of the court. “Well, I don’t know. Honestly, I don’t want to. I wanted to blah, blah, blah all weekend.” She knows because I’ve told her fifty times, at least, what my plans were-I always do! Well, then the “look” comes and the dichotomy of the expression and words that certainly do not match as she says, “You don’t have to go.” Wait. Back up the bus. [Beep, beep, beep literally bounces off the bathroom walls. Isn’t that where all these conversations happen between a husband and wife? Seems like it in my castle…with a bus almost always in the bathroom too!] And what happens next? A fork in the road and I know I must take it. To the left or to the right? Right is right and left is what I really want. Stink!
Next, she does that “wife thing” where she doesn’t say anything at all. How’s this? You give me a look like, “You should go” partnered with words saying, “You don’t have to go.” This throws my brain into a state of, “She’s invariably right and I know what I should do and yet I don’t want to do that–I want to do, what I want to do! Crap!” Then, I remember “lousy Lot” and “Abraham’s applause.” This is a decision and you can make a “Lot choice” or an “Abraham choice.” So, what did I do? I tried very hard to rationalize over and over in my head why I should stay home! Did I? No. I went, and I was very glad! My family, and especially my grandchildren, have greater value than my own life to me.
So what happened over the weekend? We helped out by taking the older gran-chillins home from the hospital after looking-in on our grandson, making pizza for them, watching a movie (I almost stayed up for the whole thing!) and overall having a good time. We took them to lunch the next day and then back home per their mother’s instructions. Then we went by the hospital to see our little man; delivering a treat to Mom and Dad of some Andy’s ice cream, visited for a little while and headed home.
Did anything unbelievably “profound” happen over the weekend? Not that I noticed. Did Abraham do anything “profound” on a single weekend of his life that carried him through to be the father of many nations? Well, there was the day he faithfully obeyed God and almost sacrificed his son. I’ll give him that as a “profound” act. And, there was the day he tried to save evil Sodom and Gomorrah bargaining with God for His mercy over fifty righteous people, and there weren’t fifty. Then he asked for forty-five, forty, thirty, twenty, ten. We know how that story ended so I’m not chalking that one up to a life-long “changing” win for Abraham. I guess you can say he must have had a heart that was tremendous to go to bat for two cities that were full of wickedness against a Pitcher who always throws a no-hitter–yes, from that perspective he’s tremendous. Yet, neither of these two acts–even combined–held the substance to leave a legacy that still impacts our world and culture today! So, I’m not going to let this weekend of seemingly “non-uber importance” stop me from knowing I made the better “Abraham-like” choice and hopefully several “little” things I did over the weekend helped contribute to the legacy I’ll leave this earth someday.