Two becomes Fourteen

In the aftermath of Chandler’s 125th Celebration, Lloyd’s words still ring in my ears. No, not words he spoke to me, but words he spoke to Chandler’s first pastor, Dave Everly. “We have saved up two years of salary for you.” And after that, well, Dave needed to pay for himself…

***

Facebook unveiled Timeline a few weeks ago. This feature will allow users to scroll back through time. Looking back at status updates, when friendships began – a diary of our online selves.  Which makes me ponder: For me there is a huge difference between my online life and my real life, but I wonder how many online lives are a replica of their real lives?

***

Phoebe has been sick since the 125th. Probably because she is worried about her daddy’s paycheck… seriously it is just a nasty cold – the doctor calls it croup and gave us a prescription for a steroid. But my little girl did not want to bulk up and refused to take the medicine. She would fight and cry and spit it out. We tried to hold her down and force her to take it – but spitting and flaying she got only a half dose. I was angry, Meg was in tears, so we got out the ice cream. Ivy gladly ate her scoop, but Phoebe refused. I guess she knew it was laced…

… she even refused to take Ibuprofen. But for fever reducer we had another option, the suppository. I threatened her with this, thinking she would quickly back down. Instead she became polite. “Bottom please.” Then afterwards, “Thank you daddy.”

I am not kidding.

This morning I was able to get her to eat laced Dora yogurt. So we are making headway…

***

We are all on a timeline. Looking back it is easy to see our brilliance and foolishness. From this vantage point (in the future) the path we should have traveled is clear. And of course when I look back I always envision myself making the right decision. I am stronger and wiser in my imagination.

And in some ways this is what I thought the internet was all about. A place to leave the past behind and move into the future. Instant gratification. And it does produce condensed lifestyles. Where our decisions are not based on building the future, but gratifying today (hence the pictures and messages people send – forfeiting relationships to gain lust). Much like Phoebe, who forfeits her health rather than take medicine…

And yet Facebook is connecting us with the past. Reminding us our actions  are not unconnected, but tied into the timeline. What we do matters. Who we are matters. The past can not be avoided, because it is not just about us. We are a part in the story of humanity. The story of everyone.

And for this we can not focus just on today. We can not focus just on ourselves. We should take the difficult steps, like Dave stepping into the pastorate. The challenge was clear. The church had to grow enough to support him. Yet he moved his wife and two boys across the state. He was wisely afraid, but strong enough to be bold.

And his choice worked, the church grew. The two years promised become fourteen. Without him, the first full-time pastor, would Chandler have reached 125?

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