The Universe and The Time: Carpe Diem, Vita Brevis: Seize the Day, Life is Short

From The Universe and The Time blog: “Carpe Diem, Vita Brevis” in other words, “Seize the Day, Life is Short”~

I stumbled across this blog a while back. Another iteration of a reminder we all need frequently – make the most each day; relish in the ordinary; we know not the hour or the day it will all be over, so make hay while you can.

YES.

And for the blog itself,
— Read on: theuniverseandthetime.blogspot.com/2013/02/carpe-diem-vita-brevis-seize-day-life.html

1st Grade Sit-in

Our younger daughter has ups and downs with distance learning so far. Our other children, too. Maybe most kids do.

Not made easier by the two-way bilingual dynamic for the program she’s in.

Recently I sat with our six year old as she began her school day.

“Mariana Mariana…” the kids repeat.

I sit quietly on the side with my earbuds plugged into my daughter’s pink headset.

She’s a bit of a sleepy head right now. Deep into the week, a little earlier to bed might help. There’s a lot of yawning, a lot of fidgeting. And it’s only been 15 minutes.

Pandemic Life doesn’t make the kids’ days any easier. Bad air from surrounding wildfires don’t help.

I wonder how much these circumstances effect her experience. I bet a lot. A WHOLE lot. But that’s not the last word, either.

The situation isn’t ideal, but that’s life. Supporting through it, that’s God’s Grace in action.

Please work through me, Lord.

All Houses Shake

Let’s start this way, from the Book of Luke, Chapter 6.

“I will show you what someone is like who comes to me,
listens to my words, and acts on them.
That one is like a man building a house,
who dug deeply and laid the foundation on rock;
when the flood came, the river burst against that house
but could not shake it because it had been well built.
But the one who listens and does not act
is like a person who built a house on the ground
without a foundation.
When the river burst against it,
it collapsed at once and was completely destroyed.”

Here’s what I know. I’ve worked to keep my house on rock all my life. Overall. But there have definitely been times, plenty of times, when I’ve struggled; in my worst moments, ideals have gone out the door due to matters that proved to much for me in the moment.

This verse from the Book of Luke is one of my favorites. It calls us to strive for what we know is right, to heed the wise words we hear, to build our house on rock, to fortify against the inevitable dangers, struggles, floods of difficulty that come along in life.

We’re called to trust in the foundation we’ve laid, and do what we know is right and correct in each moment in those most difficult times. In this way, the high river waters of life’s most challenging moments will not sweep you away; your house will stand firm.

All houses shake. But in the flood, yours can, yours will, stand firm. Let it be so.

Fire In The Sky

It’s been quite a crazy year, this 2020.

We’ve got the Global COVID Pandemic, over 7,000 wild fires in the Western US so far, and sequester life and distance learning and so much wrapped up in between.

A weird year filled with uncertainty and many unsettling things.

Here in the San Francisco Bay Area where fires are burning on three sides it seems, the sky was gray, then later dark orange-red.

The kids were saying it was something like a movie maybe, living on Mars.

SURREAL.

Looking out into the strange orange hue, I can’t help but think, “Carry On.” “Keep going. Do what you can. Stay connected. Don’t give up.”

Even as there is fire in the sky waiting to rain down, PERSEVERE.

Do what you have to do to adjust and protect yourself and your people. And don’t let up. PERSEVERE.

Through the pandemic and challenges at work and home, enduring fire from the sky, the orange red time of many unknowns, PERSEVERE.

Lyrics Post: “Everyday Glory”

You might be thinking, “RUSH must be this guy’s pandemic band…” not so.

In fact, this band has buoyed me for the better part of my life. Here’s another great lyric from a more recent tune by these guys, so true, seeking every day glory.

Enjoy.

“In the house where nobody laughs

And nobody sleeps

In the house where love lies dying

And the shadows creep

A little girl hides shaking

With her hands on her ears

Pushing back the tears

‘Til the pain disappears

Mama says some ugly words

Daddy pounds the wall

They can fight about their little girl later

Right now they don’t care at all

No matter what they say…

No matter what they say…

No matter what they say…

No matter what they say…

Everyday people

Everyday shame

Everyday promise shot down in flames

Everyday sunrise

Another everyday story

Rise from the ashes and blaze

In everyday glory

In the city where nobody smiles

And nobody dreams

In the city where desperation

Drives the bored to extremes

Just one spark of decency

Against a starless night

One glow of hope and dignity

A child can follow the light

No matter what they say…

No matter what they say…

No matter what they say…

No matter what they say…

Everyday people

Everyday shame

Everyday promise shot down in flames

Everyday sunrise

Another everyday story

Rise from the ashes and blaze

In everyday glory

If the future’s looking dark

We’re the ones who have to shine

If there’s no one in control

We’re the ones who draw the line

Though we live in trying times

We’re the ones who have to try

Though we know that time has wings

We’re the ones who have to fly…”

Writer(s): Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, Neil Peart

Let It Be

Let it be, as it is, plain and simple wisdom, so easy and true. The path of least resistance presented to you.

So often we might try to turn things around, make them bend to our will, standing our ground.

For me I will say, that’s oft not the case, much better to go with the flow, no time to waste.

Especially with kids, at home or away, stay with them, tuned in. Pick and choose your battles. REALLY difficult sometimes – like just now, as our kids go through their final chatter of the night! – really difficult, but not worth blowing a gasket.

Often better to let it flow, let it go, and not force. Measured influence, plying without shouting, guiding, not demanding. Take this approach more often, you’ll be glad you did.

Let it be.

Little Did I Know

Little did I know the relevance and poignancy of this tweet from last year.

Almost exactly one year ago, how could it be so?

And yet here we are. 2020 had so many black marks: struggles at work, struggles at home, wildfires, untimely deaths, friends and family with cancer, and of course, a global pandemic.

So many things demanding we adjust, comply, modify, withstand, persevere. And that’s exactly the tact we must take: adjust, but don’t give up; compromise, accommodate, stand together, NEVER GIVE UP.

Resilience is what we are called to. Resilience is the mantra we must repeat. Hour upon hour, day after day.

Stay in. STAY IN.

A New Way

Striving, searching, thinking about a new path. How to proceed, how to behave, how to think about it all?

We walk a path, we work hard to get in the groove. We find the pace, the manner to step, we get comfortable with the features along the way.

And then inevitably, at some point, things change. Maybe gradual, or maybe abruptly. Sometimes maybe a punch in the nose knocks you off course. And then what?

You have to find a new path. Maybe everything is crushed, or maybe some things are gone, changed.

Find a new path. Find a new way.

In Parallel

One of my favorite concepts from geometry, imagery still floats in my head all these years, decades later. Parallel lines drawn with a ruler and pencil, precision work. Must have my dad’s influence when I was a kid; he was a math teacher.

I think of “parallel” in other context:

Often we work in parallel with others; most certainly we live parallel lives with those around us, our parents, partner, children, friends, neighbors.

How does that go? How should it go?

Maybe we live in parallel with our faith too, with God, whatever we think, imagine, believe God to be. What I mean by this is, there are whatever those ideals are around God, and then there’s our practical, day-to-day living and applying of those ideals.

Parallel, but maybe we cross over, cross lines, lose that orientation from time to time. Intersect, good or bad? Does it have to be good or bad? Can it just be?

Can we just be, in parallel, with those around us? My experience says, it’s lonely if we’re parallel all the time. I’d rather intersect.

Connected?

Seems to me this idea’s come up before, seems to me it’s fundamental, being connected.

It’s a technical thing on the one hand, “…VPN reconnecting…” tells you how fast you’ll need to work to catch-up, seconds, minutes tick by, the birds chirping in the yard a gentle solace.

My children’s images on my screen, telling me it will be ok; ok overall, but as the moments tick by, a reboot looms, save your work.

Connected, reconnected, I long for the touch, a sense of belonging and place and purpose. Not sure why it’s so important, so integral to calm, satisfied peace of mind.

Weekend’s better for this; better to hone the skill to get there at will, connected. Feel it when we’re together, falling asleep together, waking up together, laughing together, smiling, living together.

Longing, searching, yearning, wanting, to understand, how to connect. My family the salve, time granted, invested.

Another summer weekend, another Friday, Saturday night camping with the kids in the back yard.

Together. CONNECTED.