Petrified Fungus

Dr, Gary, Davis, Fungus, Petrified, Relationships, People

 by Nicolas Rück 

Def.— Fungus:  any one of a group of related plants (such as molds, mushrooms, or yeasts) that have no flowers and that live on dead or decaying things.

 http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fungus

            The above definition of fungus is also analogous to any number of governmental agencies, business corporations, churches, marriages, & interpersonal relationships. Think pork-barrel spending, executive bonuses, Medieval Christian expressions still prevalent, friendships that have long since lost their significance, or loveless adversarial marriages.

We have too many relationships in our lives that have lost their core, their reason to exist. They become like fungus, once attached to a living, thriving entity, now dead. Even worse, those connections have become solidified — devoid of even symbiotic attachment. We become simply a carcass of petrified fungus.

It is an observable fact that many organizations and individuals grow stagnant in the way they function. The zest that once typified them has slipped into the doldrums of despondency. Relationships take effort. If there seems to be no umph! in your marriage or church or company maybe it is because you have lost your vision, or your sense of expecting God to work. Maybe your relationship, be it spousal or friendship, has plummeted the depths of boredom because you just haven’t put anything into it lately…, or, for a long time. Your life & friendships are dying from a lack of oxygen.

Being the first one to make the effort to bring fresh air back into a mission, or marriage, is always a daunting effort. If God has designed you to be the one who must initiate the first steps toward reconciliation, or restoration, or forgiveness, then get used to it. It’s what you were made for. Think of it as your curse, or your privilege; doesn’t matter. JUST GET ON AND DO IT.

Sure, you get tired of being the one who must initiate every innovation or repair of a relationship. You wish to God that someone else would beat you to it. Again, it doesn’t matter. SIMPLY DO IT. Do not let unresolved issues run-on unresolved. The deepest pain I live with are people who do not want resolution in relationships. But there have been points where all my efforts became futile. It is only after years of trying that I give up, realizing that true resolution must be a two way street.

If you do not come to a resolution you will find yourself in a petrified relationship— within your place of work, your friendships, or your marriage. And it will eventually kill you. YOU will become a petrified fungus, no longer capable of doing little more than lying there, dormant, ineffective, and, in essence, a dead weight to anyone around you.

Is this what you want to settle for in life? I sure as hell don’t.

For what it’s worth,

  Gary

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Ripples

Dr, gary, Davis, Clueless, Christian, Christianity, effects, affected, relationshipsRemember sitting on a summer beach letting the water roll in— letting it wash over you in its salty brine? Did your eyes follow the surf as its ripples returned to the sea in currents and eddies? Never the same twice, but always the same ripples…, returning to the sea.

I often ponder the similarities between those ocean ripples and the effects I might have on another person. How do the ripples of my life choices affect the currents, the ebb and flow of the lives I touch? Hopefully, the way I live and relate with others builds them in their lives; hopefully, their lives start to reflect some of the same ripples that have trickled through my life.

For I am the result of countless friends, mentors, critiques, counselors, and even enemies. I have not been one to swim under the ripples that pushed toward me; rather, I have learned to flow with them, for a while, until I learn whatever lesson is carried by that ripple.

That being said, it must also be added that sometimes those ripples had to build to the level of a tsunami for me to ride along with it. We all fight the tides of life that threaten us, that want to push us off our course, and I was no exception. Now…, not so much. This has probably come from being churned up in the surf far too many times.

Whatever stage of life wherein you find yourself, whatever dire or laudable circumstance, you are making ripples for everyone you know. What kinds of ripples are you leaving in your wake? Do they buoy up a person, or just about drown them? Does your family enjoy and respect you, or fear your return from work? Do your employees see you as a hard task-master or someone who empowers them to greater performance and joyful sacrifice? As you meet passersby do you smile at them, or appear stern and even threatening?

You need to know the kinds of effects you have on the people that surround you. Is it building and uplifting, giving them the thrill of a surfer riding the waves? Or are your ripples more like the pounding surf in a hurricane, bringing destruction wherever its waves land?

The kinds of ripples you leave in your wake are your legacy to your family, your grandchildren, your community, and to this planet. Leave good ones! For what it’s worth,

  Gary

how to give

Dr, Gary, Davis, Clueless, humility, Christianity, NEEDinc, Thank, thankful, thanks, thankfulness, giving, relationships, meaning, Christmas, gifts, grace, graciously, gracious, In the spirit of this approaching Christmas season (Hanukkah was over the evening of December 5th) it might be a good time to be reminded of some of the principles of giving. Keep in mind that giving should be meaningful, both for the giver and the receiver. Never give out of rote: give because it is right and good.  Ergo—

How to Give—a Seven Point Primer

  1. Give because it is right. No matter what your definition of right is, giving cannot be construed as anything else. It is not a bribe, a peace offering, or a one-upmanship on the receiver. It must simply be simply right, nothing else.
  2. Give within your means—with some wee bit of sacrifice. It may never be noticed by the other person. That does not matter. It will secretly mean much much more to you.
  3. Give in terms of the other person’s wants and needs, NOT in terms of what you would like to give them. When my wife and I were first married I would always give her clothing; she could have cared less. Didn’t even take the blouse or scarf out of the box. Then I noticed she loved to read: so I gave her books. Guess what? She hugged & kissed me and vanished for three days reading the new book. I learned to give in terms of what she wanted.
  4. Plan for giving. Always try to squirrel away cash-in-a-stash for later giving. It’s freeing! Giving up 2 cups of coffee a week could free up $20 a month. Get the picture?
  5. Get into the practice of giving. Christmas won’t be such a big thing if you already give to others regularly.
  6. Give graciously. Not lavishly, unless if seems appropriate to you. There is little in this life that expresses genuine love like sacrificial graciousness.
  7. Accept ALL gifts with thankfulness and humility. The one giving them has sacrificed for you. Especially be thankful for hand-made gifts, no matter the quality. They are the most precious of all.

Above all, be thankful that you have the means to give anything at all. Not all people on this planet have the resources to give very much. So, if you are one who does, please do not hold back. And always remember the poor in your giving. God does. Please.

Merry Christmas,

Gary

in your face

Dr, Gary, Davis, Clueless, Christianity, NEEDinc, confrontationPeople who get in your face don’t give you much room. You are certainly not allowed to interrupt. Horrors! In no uncertain terms, any thought of actually contradicting them is totally out of the question. Even a simple interjection is too much for them to handle.

So, they talk. And talk. And talk. If you dare interrupt, they simply talk louder, and/or faster. Why? They have to stay in control; they have to take the dominant position and hang on to it tenaciously. You do not matter; you have nothing to say which interests them. They have all the information they need; they are right; and when they want your opinion they will tell you what it is.

You’re being “preached-at,” scolded, berated, and cornered. I see this most in husband/wife relationships, and between insecure bosses and their employees.

Throughout life there will be those who cross our paths who must dominate, control, assume authority, and come at us, for no more apparent reason other than they believe they are smarter and more right, than we are. In fact, they never truly discover who we are: they just don’t care about it.

How do we handle such people? Unless we really have to go to the bathroom, we truly just stand there as they browbeat us. My best advice? Humility. Let them unload whatever it is on their mind. We recently had a repairman in our home that was passionate about his Christian faith. He may have been excited, but we were left no room to respond. It was a one way conversation.

I hate being preached at. Whether it is some Christian trying to convert me to his point of view, a philosopher-type endeavoring to drive home a universal point of “Meaning,” or a Telemarketing call, I hate it! I am a person with a studied mind, a passionate heart, and a few opinions of my own. What would give me the right to pound my point of view into someone else with no consideration for their thoughts?

Might I suggest that conversations, healthy ones, at least, need to remain give-‘n-take, maintaining dialog more than monolog. Might I suggest graciousness in listening to someone else’s point of view, tempered with wisdom?

Could it be possible that people who are so assertive must preserve that stance because, deep within, they are not really that certain? Give them some room, and some time: everyone deserves a chance to learn, to amend their ways. Still, no one has a right to be in your face…, even me.

Cordially,

Gary