The Written LAB-Oratory

Presenting Truth disguised as Fiction. And exposing Fiction disguised as Truth.

Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter. The Reason for the Seasons.

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There is a time for everything.  I love the concept of “keeping the reason for the season all year long,” but it’s really impossible.  We can’t stay up or down for too long without burning out.  We all know those who are in a perpetual state of anger or hate.  These are the most tiring people to be around.  Even those who are in an eternal state of happiness without regard to circumstances are beyond the emotional or mental patience of most people.  Both bounds of the pendulum come across as fake or immature.

Without the up time, the down time seems pointless and without the down time, the uptime is unbearable. But that is only half the story.  A few days ago I was almost in a pretty bad accident. A car decided that his nice calm 30 mile an hour lane was just too slow and that my lane cursing along at 60 was much nicer.  The problem was that he executed his lane change only about 30 yards in front of me. Time slowed.  My vision narrowed.  My muscles took over.  I didn’t have to think about looking for more roadway to extend the distance between us.  I never had to tell myself to scan for other cars.  My foot never received an urgent message from my cortex, “HEY!  BREAK!  BUT DON’T LOCK ‘EM!”

The crisis only lasted a split second, but because I’d thought about this and worked on it before, I avoided the pile up with only a post adrenaline dump to deal with.

There’s a saying, “Train like you fight.  Fight like you train.”   Sonny Puzikas, former Spetsnaz, says you will only rise to the level of your training.  Training isn’t reality, it’s realistic.  The brain doesn’t care if the bullets are real or fake, as long as the scenario is realistic your brain will wire itself to respond a certain way to certain stimuli.  I was never in an accident like that before, but I’d thought about it, pretended it would happen, and trained my brain to react a certain way.  And the training didn’t really take all that much time.

So you don’t have to train 24/7?  But you do find time to train and to work on that training.  We know this in other areas of our life and it’s why we take courses relevant to our state in life so we know what to do in our vocation or avocation.  We also take refresher courses or “continuing education” to remind us of the things we should already know.

The religious seasons are our training sessions.  Each time they come around we can focus on various aspects of our spiritual training. Why?  Because you never know when life is going to deploy you into a theater of spiritual warfare.  Just like soldiers never know when they may be called up, we never know when we will be called upon to do spiritual battle.  These times are our continuing education to remind us (when we get hit with a huge amount of ugly) not only what to do and how to do it, but WHO we should be calling on for help.  Those who don’t take advantage of these times find themselves floating on a sea of uncertainty just like a green civilian handed a rifle and thrown on a barricade.

That’s why it’s so important to focus on Advent when it’s Advent and Christmas when it’s Christmas.  Forgetting Advent and taking a month of consumer driven “Christmas” with only one day of actual Christmas, leaves you without this year’s continuing ed.  When January rolls around and the news piles up with evil and work piles up with troubles and family piles up with needs, if you didn’t take the time to reflect and learn, you will be rolled over by life.

So, this Lent, take the time to really reflect.  Give yourself the chance get ready for the Easter Season so that when it’s over you will be ready for the machinations of life come the summer months.  Then when Advent and Christmas comes aging, you can gear up for that year’s training.  Train like you fight…

We are creatures of dynamism.  We grow and change and we can’t evolve in life without taking time out to reflect and train ourselves and meld the old to the new.  Each season can give us, if we chose to learn, new insights to ourselves and our relationship to God.  Don’t be fooled by Madison Ave. into giving up the time appointed by God to continue your education of Him. Without it, you will fight like you train, which means, not well at all.

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Written by lablount

January 7, 2013 at 1:08 am

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