Monday, February 1, 2016


Yesterday it was warm and I saw some kids playing catch in a front yard.  It reminded me of my youth.

We ran and played all day.  Every chance that we could, we were outside.  We played every sport:  baseball, football, soccer, pickle and more.  We had bicycle races, neighborhood Olympics and baseball games.  Did I mention baseball?

Oh, what a time of life.  Back then we didn't worry about paying the bills.  We did not worry about how our kids were doing.  We didn't worry about retirement or love or divorce or surgeries or muscle atrophy.  It was clearly a very good time, but I am not sure that we realized just how good it was.

Now, we are older and we are burdened.  With love and rejection, with bills, with cataracts, with extra pounds, and with worry about children.  We are burdened with loss, fear and anxiety.

And I have a thought.  We can still play catch.  Hey, let's have a catch.  I have gloves at my house, here and in Florida.  Just for a moment, lets slip back in time and just enjoy the moment of freedom.  No worries, no fear, just catch and throw.

If the good times where playing catch when we were young and had no awareness of problems, the great times are when we know about toxic waste and toxic people and all of life's messes, but can still stop to play catch.  To not know pain is one thing, to rise above pain is another indeed!

Just because we know about the troubles that are here now and troubles that may come, doesn't mean that we should not celebrate from time to time.

It is a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see  the good.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oh Jeff, you really nailed this one. What a thing that each of us should contemplate. There are some associated life focuses that I think impact this at each stage of our life. I hope you won't mind if I share them. A bit of what I've learned, besides from observing people in general, is what I've learned by working in my career and church life, with people of all ages:

PLAY (as you watch pre-schoolers at play) is the child's work. They are already working hard at a young age, to play and act out sometimes what they see from adult. (little kitchens for cooking, little dolls for baby tending, little tool sets for hammering and building, trucks and tractors for farming.)

Then as teens their WORK is learning to transition into adult hood. Their WORK is dealing with growing physically. They work hard and sometimes with not perfect success at growing up and away from adult supervision, into learning to make wise decisions and be their own person. I'm thinking that if teens could not get out a play ball and other sports, the sheer anatomy thing of growing their bodies so fast, would be very difficult for them.

As Adults I think the very keen sense of responsibility for maintaining a home, a good family, dealing with the sandwich generation issues, just keeps piling on so much WORK, that it's easy to crowd out time for relaxation. You just feel responsible to people in your home, in your church, and in your work. It's a lot, if you want to do it right.

Then the funny thing I see happening with some Seniors (not all of them by any means) is that they pack up and head to sunshine states where it's warmer, and literally play all winter. The proliferation of seniors centers, even for those who aren't snowbirds, has built a lot of play into the lives of seniors who are fortunate enough to not have a lot of declining health issues to deal with. So in a sense, a lot of seniors have revolved right back to childhood where the WORK at PLAYING.

But the important thing is that you've raised the issue of how important it is for adults of all ages to literally make time for some relaxation, de-stressing, and playing. Sometimes we live as though God couldn't possibly handle all this if we take some time out to de-stress.

Thanks again for this good post and all your others. Glad we won't have to miss them when you move south.