A Borrowed Life

Surfing the internet for information yields some very interesting discoveries.  I find it more and more difficult to find trustworthy information.  Everyone has an opinion, and now, thanks to social media, your opinion can be known by thousands upon thousands of people in just a few seconds.  Opinions are a dime a dozen, facts are rare.  And have you noticed how angry everyone is? Outside of articles written about actual atrocities, crimes, and evil in the world, are millions of quotes, comments, and blogs written by people, about things they have never really investigated for themselves, but became stirred in their anger, doubt, or indifference.  Conversations with people tend to move that direction too–from the things they have studied and know, to the angry opinion about what they have never really looked into.

They are shouting from rooftops, and writing articles.  They break into every conversation with their opinions, but if they are pressed as to their anger, you will find it is second, third, or fourth-hand offenses, doubts or information they are borrowing as their own.  The topics range from politics, religion, local churches, schools, animal shelters, restaurants, medicine, etc….  “You see, I once heard this guy who told me of a story heard about this person who was a real jerk…and that’s why I won’t step foot in that place.”

I find it rare to encounter someone who is angry, doubt-filled, or indifferent about a particular subject or person who has first-hand reasons to be.  People borrow offenses, borrow doubts, borrow answers, and borrow trouble more than they can keep up with.  It becomes the reason people won’t read books, won’t ask questions themselves, won’t investigate truth, and won’t live fully. It creates clan wars, tribal feuds, church splits, and mud-slinging arguments. And when you live a borrowed life, the only fuel that can keep you going is anger.

Anger is the new caffeine.  But to what end does this fuel drive you?

I want to challenge you to live.  Living means learning, growing, investigating, educating, feeling, being moved with compassion, working, trying, forgiving, resting, being.  Life isn’t only living in the intense feelings of distrust, bitterness, judgment, arrogance, and opinion, thought that may make you feel the most “alive” at the moment.  Living involves living a first-hand life and dealing with your anger and frustration.

Anger and frustration are alarm systems put in place to let you know you need to move one direction or another. You either need to confront the obstacle or issue or you need to move from it.  You may need to investigate the source of the “smoke”, and put the fire out yourself, or you need to change your own battery which is now worn out, cynical, and all other ways grumpy and hard to live with.

No matter what, you are responsible for your life and the causes you live for and ultimately die for.  Don’t waste your life on someone else’s anger or doubt.  Don’t live a borrowed life.  Find your passions and then make a difference.  Investigate your questions. Let your life add to the beauty of living.  Be the neighbor you want to live next to, and the student you would love to teach.  Be the woman or man that is respected because of the way you treat others, not because of the fear you invoke.  Take the risk to live.

When you walk away from the borrowed life you discover that people are valuable and opinions are noteworthy. You realize that there is real evil to confront, and sometimes it’s inside of you. You also find that you know a lot less than you thought, and that you are in need of a Savior. If you doubt that–investigate it for yourself!2004-01-04 13.49.42