Sunday, August 06, 2006

It'll Be a Gas!

2 Corinthians 10:9-10 (New International Version)

“I do not want to seem to be trying to frighten you with my letters. For some say, “His letters are weighty and forceful, but in person he is unimpressive and his speaking amounts to nothing.”

On Friday night I went over to Jim and Judy Kegin’s place. Jim is now living in Presbyterian Manor; the Pick’s Disease he was diagnosed with a couple of years ago is taking its progressively heavy toll. Judy is moving to a new apartment complex in town called Ashley Estates. Thus, Friday night a small group of us went over to load up the truck for her. There wasn’t a lot of stuff to move, a washer and dryer, sofas, computer and computer desk, boxes of books, a box filled with Jim’s ordination certificate, Doctor of Ministry certificate, and so forth. We were done with it all in about two and a half hours.

One of the things I carried out was a large globe of the world on a stand. As I was doing it someone mentioned that I now had the weight of the world on my shoulders. Given my writing lately it must seem so to those who occasionally read this blog.

This all comes at an unusual time for me. I feel absolutely great. Nancy and I are looking forward to a trip to Zion National Park in September to celebrate our twentieth anniversary and then in December we’re going to spend a few days with some very dear friends in North Carolina. Nancy’s mother and brother are moving to Emporia, which is really good news for us. My granddaughter is starting college in a few days. There’s a lot for me to be happy about.

But, along with the sweet comes the bitter. Seeing Jim’s condition deteriorate is heartbreaking. That was especially evident to me as I looked at all the memorabilia celebrating his thirst for knowledge and education. It just seems so unfair to me, so un-just.

And, the news from the Middle-East is getting heavier by the day. The thing that bothers me most in the tragedy being played out there is that Israel is now being cast as the villain in this morality play. And, beyond all the machinations to bring peace to the region, there is something very stilted in the air. As Sweeney Todd’s mother said, “There’s demons lurkin’ about.” Hassan Nasrallah and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are casting heavy shadows on everything that’s going on over there. Just a few days ago Ahmadinejad called for a cease fire. It seemed like good news. But following on the heels of that he also made it clear that Iran’s intent in this matter, whether sooner or later, is the complete destruction of Israel:

“Although the main solution is for the elimination of the Zionist regime, at this stage an immediate cease-fire must be implemented,” Ahmadinejad said, according to state-run television in a report posted on its Web site.”

France’s foreign minister, Philippe Douste-Blazy, said that Iran’s statement was “absolutely unacceptable” and is “ruining its chances to play a positive and stabilizing role in the Middle East.”

I guess the French must have felt the need to inject a bit of comic relief into this otherwise deadly serious crisis.

I suppose I shouldn’t take this all too seriously. After all, humor often defuses what could be a crisis. Right?

Back in the sixties, and continuing into the early seventies, Hogan’s Heroes was one of the most popular sitcoms on television. It brought comic relief to the nation at a time when we were in the midst of a very unpopular war. I never could quite bring myself to see what was so funny about life in a Nazi prisoner of war camp. But millions of others apparently did. The show ran for close to ten years, and may even still be in syndication.

It all makes me wonder if some enterprising network guru might have his script writers working on something humorous to help the public deal with the current crisis. Maybe they’re working on a sitcom about the death camps that dotted Europe’s landscape back in the thirties and forties. I can almost see the team sitting in a conference room working on it right now. “Let’s see, we can revive Schultzie and Colonel Klink.”
“Ooooh, I like that. We’ll have them bumbling around the barracks while the smoke rises.”
“The public will love it.”
“Just throw in a couple of prison-wise Zionists for good measure and we’ll have ourselves a hit.”
The Nielsen’s will absolutely explode.”
“Oh man, oh man. It’ll be a gas! It’ll be an absolute gas!”

Yes, I suppose I should lighten up. I should see the humor in all of this. But, I can’t. Some things just aren’t funny.

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1 comment:

prying1 said...

Good post Phil but I was reminded of two things - One is the king (Solomon in some stories) that wanted a ring that would make him happy when sad and sad when happy. He recieved the ring that said, "This too will pass!"

The other is the scripture that says, "Look up for your redemption draweth nigh."

Hang on to the memories and look forward to Jim's being with the Lord. In situations like this just be the best friend you can be and remember that WE know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose....

Even if WE don't see it.