Home > Reflection > Soon I Will Embark, But Not Yet.

Soon I Will Embark, But Not Yet.

The organization that is our armed forces has disillusioned one of my friends to the point that where he once had lofty and admirable aspirations in the direction of academic and intellectual achievement, the only aspiration left in his worn-down mind is to be a civilian. (At the risk of sounding gloatingly gleeful) I’ve had four days to live like one, and it is awesome.

These four days have proven to be valuable. It was rest and recovery time I needed quite acutely, and it’s been a time of spiritual and mental preparation as well. Also, the chance to live like a civilian for this uncommonly long period of time is an experience that has been intensely sweet.

RIght now, for example, I’ve had time for reflection, and I’ve prayed in a way I’ve not been able to do in quite a long time. It’s a luxury, in a way, because sometimes life and obligations don’t leave you enough breath or space for it. Right now, I also have coffee, which, for me, you know, makes most things better. (Even if the coffee isn’t fantastic, but I knew it was a risk.) And right now, I’m also in quite a perfect spot for people-watching. The view is also quite good, even though it is a little dim. I am under a bridge. The people are mostly tourists and they’re everything from carefree and buoyant to purposeful or even unhappy, which is kind of like my weekend, I suppose. It’s been a relief and a joy, but there’ve been stresses and angst as well. I guess both of my two lives have their struggles, although I more easily make light of or push aside the concerns of one in the face of the more pressing demands of the other.

But yes, I’ve realized I do have two lives; I’ve naturally resisted accepting one of them, but that would be a futile effort now. But, more and more, I’ve realized the other one is still very much there, although it’s quite different from what I had before I had two lives, and although I’ve felt that it was being taken away from me.

A few days ago, when I started to consider the idea that I had two lives, one of the things I wondered about was which way I’d swing. I guess now that I’m slightly less unaware of the nature of my situation, I know the real question isn’t so much of where I should swing but how not to fall blindly into one or the other, since I do have responsibilities in both that I take seriously. It is true that one man cannot serve two masters, but at the same time a man must know where he stands, and it becomes all the more important to remember who the true master is. That being said, relations with my would-be masters are probably going to be problematic just the same, but men have been in the same situation before, and those problems aren’t on my immediate horizon.

So I thank God that I’m able to embark on my next, well, adventure from a solid foothold. I know the careful and conservative part of me is still dreading the pain of seven days of Warrior and 80 klick of Long Stride, but otherwise my anticipation is less of the painful sort than the excited sort. And, as I had the chance to affirm to a friend yesterday, I know God will bring me through it somehow or by some way, and I’ll be better for it or I’ll end up somewhere better.

Because I don’t know if I’ll have the time next weekend: Starlight, here I come! (Cue music.) But if I do have the time, I’ll do it again.

To the people I acknowledge far too rarely, thank you for your prayers.

Categories: Reflection
  1. 'neth
    2 August 2009 at 7:58 pm

    haha take care mate. Civilianhood ftw!

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