For the past 10 days or so, Andy has a really bad cough. Every night, there's been a clockwork 3 a.m. coughing spasm--and that's had a very strange up-side for me.
We all know that our brains stay busy while we sleep, dreaming and repairing and whatever. Since we're asleep, we mostly don't get to know what our brains are up to, specifically.
But, as a result of being awakened so much during coughing spasms, I've inadvertently sneaky-spied on my brain quite a bit recently, and it's been fascinating.
The big takeaway is that my brain cells are up there, kicked back with a margarita machine, screening comedies, and, just for fun, doing theology mashups with said comedies.
It's a pretty crazy scene, frankly. Let me give you an example.
This is what my brain gave me at 3 o'clock Saturday morning: Monty Python and the God Card.
When the coughing commenced, I startled awake in the middle of Dennis the Constitutional Peasant, one of my favorite comedy sketches of all time.
When Dennis says that "Strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government," I was, simultaneously, thinking about The God Card.
The God Card is like the Ace of Trump, and it looks like this:
- God told me.
- God called me.
- This is God's will.
You've probably had this experience. You're in the middle of what appears to be a conversation, a negotiation, and suddenly The God Card is thrown: "God says we should..."
What are you going to say?
I'll tell you what I'd like to say: "Sounds like God is doing hard drugs, because what you just said is completely insane."
Let's be honest. I may have thrown The God Card myself a time or two, when I was young.
Only later, I looked back and thought, "Wow, pretty sure that was my giant ego, and not God at all."
My own experience in self-deception--in confusing my ego with God's Perfect Will--has caused me to be really uncomfortable with The God Card.
Here's what I go with instead.
I think about what I want.
I think about what I don't want.
I talk to my nearest and dearest and I listen to their feedback.
I tell God all about it, all along the way, and invite him to stop me dead in my tracks if I'm crazy.
And then I take the next step.
Usually I do whatever seems right.
Mostly I do what I want, and stay away from what I don't want.
Sometimes it's a little scary, but that's okay.
If it turns out I'm wrong, I'll get a do-over.
Because that's what Love gives us every single day: as many do-overs as necessary.
I came across this quote from Tina Fey the other day:
"When faced with sexism or ageism or lookism or even really aggressive Buddhism, ask yourself the following question: ‘Is this person in between me and what I want to do?’ If the answer is no, ignore it and move on. Your energy is better used doing your work and outpacing people that way."
Or we can be like King Arthur and The Black Knight, hacking it out over their opposing God Cards.
I've been in that battle before, and it was way more than a flesh wound.
I'd much rather take another path.