Sunday, September 13, 2009

That backspace button......

So many profoundly moving posts out there in recent days..... maybe the start of Autumn is a time for reflection or assessments, or the like. The thing about profoundly moving posts is that:

a) the fact that they are profound makes me stop and think, and do some reflecting of my own - not always a comfortable thing and
b) they are moving, which engages the emotions - thoughts about people who may be cyber friends, but they are friends, none the less, and I hurt for them.

Kelli's daughter , Kati, who is just 16, started a recent post with the words - "There is no backspace in life". Good grief. I stopped right there. She is a part of the generation who has never known life without a backspace button, or a delete button, or buttons of many kinds. Those of us who are slightly older than 16 remember those times well. The pre-technological age. Where we wrote real words on real paper and then put the paper in a real envelope and had to walk to the post office to get a stamp and then post the letter to a friend, which took 1 day - 6 weeks to arrive.

This process gave us time to reflect on what we had written. Maybe rip up the paper and toss it away. Make sure it was written neatly, and that there were no mistakes. With the advent of email and text messages, not so much any more. Hands up those who have NOT regretted firing off an email and hitting the send button. And those who inadvertantly sent a text message to the wrong person. Then wished she had the ability to slither through the waves and grab it back before it reached the inbox. Sigh. I know this feeling.

No time for second thoughts, or a cooling off period before sending a letter. I can take a photo of my kitchen while talking to my sister on Skype, download it and email it and she has it in 10 nanoseconds there before my eyes as I watch it arrive in her inbox.

There is no backspace button in life.

We can't go back and undo stuff we have said or done or sent. Make it disappear. Delete it. We can't take back words uttered in haste or in a fit of unholy temper. We can't take back or delete a look which shrivels someone at 40 paces. And unfortunately, like the computer which still somehow has all the information stored in files I cannot see and do not understand even when it is wiped clean, our minds retain the memory of words and actions which hurt us. For decades. And longer. Oh for a "delete" button then. Or a "restore to previous settings" button, so I could wipe out events and emotions, and words and all the rest. Where you could even choose the restore point. An "escape" button would also be handy at times.

But I can't wipe or escape or backspace, because I am human not a piece of machinery. You or I could build a computer in a few days. (With an instruction manual.) It is not hard. I have a son who has built his own, and friends too who have done this. It can be done. We can create a machine from bits and pieces which can delete things, which can backspace, be restored, wiped clean, made new.

But not our minds. Our hearts. What is done or said is a part of us, and how we get to deal with it depends largely on our faith. Everything which happens to me is for a reason, I believe. I learn and grow from all the good and the bad, self-inflicted or not. Mistakes and successes. Celebrations and catastrophes. I have no idea why my life has followed the path it has, but I am totally convinced that God has a reason for letting me grow this particular way. It is not for me to try to second guess Him. Yell loudly at times, though. Weep and wail, grovel, cheer or howl with laughter at times too. Stand with my hands on my hips and shout "You canNOT be serious!" I do believe He shakes His head, rolls His eyes and grins at my antics along the way. I am a bit of a trial, I think.

Thank heavens for a new day. A new chance at making things better. Seeing things more clearly. As long as I start each day knowing that the past is wiped out and behind me, I don't need that backspace button. I can't go back and change things which happened, but I can change the way I live today. It is a promise I live by. Cling to. A truth I know. It is all about forgiveness.

Ctrl Alt Delete. Restart. New start. Clean screen.

And try to do better. Paint a more beautiful picture. Keep moving forward.


Chris said...

You have no idea how this spoke to me today.

Linda said...

Your thoughts are always so beautifully expressed Linds, and they always inspire and encourage me. I am so thankful that His mercies are new every morning. What a blessing that we don't have to live life under the weight of all those things we wish we could somehow permanently delete. Jesus paid a heavy price just so we don't have to. What a precious blessing.

Louise said...

Beautiful Linds!

Needled Mom said...

Profound thoughts!

Olson Family said...

and THAT, ladies and gentlemen, was a profounding, moving post!

Thank you Linds.

Dawn said...

What a wonderful analogy, beautifully said. Your mind is a wonderful thing, even though you think a lot of it has disappeared! I love this. Love it. So true.

I'll never forget the day I wrote something to my husband and accidentally sent it to Kristen - oh, my word, the boulder in my gut!

But wise words to be cogitated upon today.

As for the patio - mundane thoughts. The old one was just as large, just really in bad shape and causing problems with the foundation - the new one is shaped more artistically, and I can't wait to see what DC does as well. I'll be sharing, you can be sure.

Jess said...

I needed this!

Love, Jess

Meggie said...

Great post Linds.

Linda said...

Linds, thank you so much for your kind comment. I cannot tell you how much it means to me. Oh that I would grow just a little bit in wisdom and grace.
I want you to know how much of an inspiration you are to me. I have watched as you have walked through amazingly difficult circumstances with such grace and strength.
One of the things I love about this wonderful group of women is that they call me to a deeper,higher relationship to the Lord. We truly are sisters of the heart.

Morning Glory said...

One of your best ever. This spoke to me today.

Jen said...

Great post! An interesting perspective. I think sometimes we get caught up in the past and how to resolve those things with ourselves that we can forget to really live. Thanks for the reminder.