Back In My Day: Purposeful Lives

Going to take a short detour for today. I need extra time to prepare the next subject series and a breather from a hectic past few weeks on the home front. I also wanted to make sure there was an audience for what I have to contribute to The QTree. If the interest continues, I have many more stories to tell. The next one will bring a new cast of characters and situation that may be unfamiliar for many of you.

Hopefully, these stories can be an escape from the drumbeat of the unprecedented internal conflict we face daily across this country. There is so much hate and corruption on display that we sometimes forget that life continues on and we need to live it well as the best defense against those would do evil against us.

Goober Gump being who Goober Gump is, stuff happened around him through the years that he simply had no clue would happen. None of it was in his plans.

I thank those of you who have read and participated so far. Please understand I have zero desire to lecture anybody else on what each person should believe, think, do, etc. My only motivation is to look back and bring some observations and truth. If that works for you, stay tuned. If not, I perfectly understand. Time allocation and level of interest is a thing in all of our lives.

Personal Observation

As we age, one of the more frustrating situations in life we may experience is that we learn that very few people actually care to listen to what we have to say, verbally or in writing. Not just hear or see, but actually listen and consider. There are a myriad of ‘whys’ that could explain it for all of us. However, those ‘whys’ can keep us from helping others as well as learning things of value; sometimes life altering or defining things.

That has not always been the case in the history of man on this planet. For many thousands of years, grey (or gray or white or no) hair folks were held in higher esteem by many younger people as they had been there, done that and lived to tell about it. That had a lot of value for those who wanted to spend more time breathing. Today, that has lost a lot of its appeal. It has been replaced with other things such as the idiot box, social media, gaming and the like. Just create an alternative reality and zoom – off they go with brains disengaged.

In my case, I have always chosen to not compete with others to be heard. If people do not want to listen to what I have to say, I notice and stop. The reason is that I have realized through the years that I don’t have enough breath and brain cells left to waste on pointless exercises. With my worldview of God’s presence being in the intimate details of the lives of all believers, I know in my soul and brain that He will provide the audience who do want to listen when and if it is needed. If it isn’t, the situation he places me in will tell me to shut up and move on, that it may not be time for it at that point or ever. I may even have more to learn before opining.

Which brings me to a major point. One of the things the world’s current crop of evil doers have done rather successfully is to work hard to remove wisdom and discernment from the minds and hearts of people. Typically we are not born with these attributes fully activated. They engage subject to the quality of people around us who care to mentor us as well as through our willingness to listen, study, pray, trust the process, observe and so on.

Add in that the dumbing down of the population by removing the ability to use critical thinking and logic skills has been a systematic process that was carefully planned, implemented and executed. It’s done in many ways all at the same time. Breakdowns of social mores and values, wars and rumors of wars, pandemics and rumors of pandemics, woke in the schools, blasphemy in the pulpits – all the fear porn that can be drummed up to influence and distract. The evidence of the plan’s implementation and execution is all around, which is a major reason why you and I are QTreepers.

Once you fully realize and accept that this dumbing down condition exists everywhere, you can develop a plan to deal with it. As is said so often on here, once you see something you cannot unsee it. It just cannot stop there. It needs to manifest into a response that helps others as well as yourself out of the morass.

There is a wild card you can play if it is in your hand to accelerate the process of gaining wisdom and discernment. The choice is yours alone, nobody will force you to do so. That wild card is Jesus Christ. Sell out to Him and be amazed at what happens next. “I once was lost, but now I’m found; was blind, but now I see.” Look at what the evil governing authorities and religious enemies did to Him as a result of His ministry of love, forgiveness, healing and redemption making such an impact on the people they controlled. Then remember His resurrection from death and the promise He has given to all who trust Him. Focus on the Helper He left to care for and guide us in our journey.

Regardless of your choice to play the wild card, my goal is to help QTree readers with these stories.

Common Themes

A comment from Wolf and one from Coothie confirmed what I had hoped would be observed with the stories. So a H/T to both.

First, you will find parallels between stories as Wolf has observed. With the connecting of the dots, we learn similar facts, events and truths that are shared in totally different situations (stories) within the same story. In real life, there are times when something is going on of importance in one location or situation; and something that is also going on at the same time in a different location or situation; with both having similar characteristics or importance. The two may at some point cross parallel and connect together or simply cross paths. The parallel stories can also be part, counter part situations, or, analogous by one resembling the other. Weird, huh? Well, not really as I have learned over time.

Second, in Coothie’s post about the Dolly story, “…she keenly assesses…then throws herself into situations because they are the right thing in her eyes.” In most of the stories I will bring, that is a common thread with those people who have accomplished a great deal in this world. They don’t talk it over with focus groups and committees while contemplating their navels first. They are plugged in, always, and have prepared for greatness to happen. They spot opportunities quickly and then go through a proven process that works best for them to accomplish their objectives. They are unafraid to make mistakes due to their preparation. If their pre-action assessments do not pan out they know when to quit and cut their losses. They have a small circle of people who provide valued input who they trust to handle various aspects of their plans. Some set about intentionally doing things with their position in society and/or with their wealth to make positive changes in the world. Other times what some undertook did not have the greater good of mankind being “the right thing” for them – although it ended up being that way frequently.

Watch for them in stories to come: parallels, preparation, seizing opportunities, commitment to process, becoming wise and discerning, helping others.

Short Story Within A Story

My wife received a call from a family friend this week who lived down the street from us for a number of years. Her husband passed away two weeks ago at age 84 from a 13 year battle with dementia. He had COVID at death and, of course, the hospital listed it on the death certificate. Shocker, I know. This highly intelligent man who worked in an important role within the Department of Defense’s Y-12 facilities for 37 years, was like a 2 year old at his death. He had spent his entire life giving to others; his country, their many children and grandchildren, choir director of a church for decades, an official for high school sports and a coach in youth sports leagues. He loved the outdoors with hunting, fishing, horseshoes and golfing as well as being a UT Vols sports fan. He was quiet, caring and respectful to everybody he met and knew. Just a great guy, the Lord brought a winner of a person home.

For those who do not know, Y-12 was where uranium 235 was separated for Little Boy – that first bad boy dropped on Japan in WW II to help bring the war to a close. The facility remained where similar, more advanced activities in nuclear weaponry were conducted for decades. Today it is involved in the waste treatment of same. Our friend was kind of a big deal there that nobody much knew about starting from the Vietnam War era until he retired just after the turn of the century. Which was just the way he wanted it.

His wife of 64 years has been his primary caregiver the entire period since diagnosis. It has been a difficult burden on her emotionally and physically as their children have been limited in their assistance with kids and busy lives. She has grown older with health issues of her own. The couple left our immediate area and moved to a different location in recent years to help her manage and be closer to the children and grandchildren, retail outlets, and medical providers. To add to the complexity, his wife is the exact opposite of her husband – intense, detail oriented, always seeking perfection. A fine person, but can be a handful.

After her husband’s death; a neighbor friend, my wife and I decided to give her a keepsake vase with scripture that we had decorated with artificial flowers and greenery by a local florist. During her life she had owned a small interior design, floral and decorating business, so we thought she might appreciate the remembrance. My wife and I ordered the vase we thought best and took it to the florist, telling her to just choose the arrangement that she liked. The total cost was around $60, nothing elaborate. Our neighbor friend then delivered it to her on our behalf since we had COVID going on again with our daughter. Which prompted the follow up call to my wife. The two of them share a common bond since my wife was the primary care giver for her mother who battled dementia for 11 years. They cried together on the phone and my wife shared how it was important to grieve now, but to also know that the victory has been won, that her husband has been freed from the chains of that evil disease. She reminded her that he would want her to be free to live with joy again. She has been struggling with missing him and with what to do with her time now that the rigid, difficult routine of the past 13 years has ended.

That’s when she shared with my wife how beautiful the vase and arrangement are, that the scripture on the vase was her husband’s favorite as were the colors and types of the flowers. She said their family was amazed by how it fit him personally and that she would display it for the rest of her life. She asked how we knew. My wife honestly replied that we did not know. That the florist, who also did not know them at all, had picked and assembled the arrangement after we chose and purchased the vase that just seemed to apply to both of them the best.

She gave me a message as well. She wanted me to know how much her husband thought of me and enjoyed our time together. Made my day. He had been in decline for so long I had no idea.

The world says, “Coincidences.” Nah. He’s in our intimate details.

For what it is worth, in writing this I was reminded that there are two additional stories to tell in the future that come just from within this one short story within a story.

Dedicated to both of you, J & J. May you always be…

Still the GOAT live version of the song in my opinion…
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Linda Harrison

Thank you for sharing.

Tonawanda

So beautiful. I like you, TradeBait2.

notasmidgeon

This is very beautiful and brings tears to my eyes. Is it wrong to question why such a giving individual has to endure this dementia and for so many years?

maumeeriver

OK. Tears. Awesome.

kalbokalbs

Wonderful story. Thanks.

64 years !!! Wow. 🙂

kalbokalbs

Yea. We have roughly the same longevity with our brides. Like you, every year a blessing, and wishing for many more. 🙂

RDS

TradeBait2
Thank you so much for this story. My vote is to please keep them coming. They say very good things and are a real respite from the unpleasant events going on in the world.

Wolf Moon | Threat to Demonocracy

AMEN!  😄 

WSB

Thank you, TradeBait2. Means a lot to me. In the midst of a similar event.

Last edited 1 month ago by WSB
Charlie

From a lurker, enjoy the stories and Wisdom.
Thank You!

pgroup2

“I also wanted to make sure there was an audience for what I have to contribute to The QTree. If the interest continues, I have many more stories to tell.”

While our foundation is truth, there are a few times where we will lie. First among them is when we encounter a statement such as this.

Even if your stuff made our teeth hurt and caused our bowels to uproar, we would never say so. If we just couldn’t bring ourselves to say something positive, we would simply keep our mouths SHUT.

FWIW.  😎 

Last edited 1 month ago by pgroup2
MA_kswiss

What a story. Thank you for sharing this.

Wolf Moon | Threat to Demonocracy

I just found this remarkably uplifting, and I’m not going to question why that was my reaction – I’m just going to say “God is good. Life can be hard, but still – God is good.”

cthulhu

I’m reminded of the old saw:

Stupid people don’t learn;
Regular people learn from their mistakes;
Smart people learn from other people’s mistakes.

If you don’t listen to other people, how are you going to learn from them?

cthulhu

A sample mistake I can share:

Never paint something where the new color wet looks the same as the old color dry. You may think you can just roll it on and get full coverage, but you’d be mistaken.

Volgarian8301

Keep the stories coming!! We all need a little uplifting from time to time. I particularly enjoy the “local” persepctive on things, very refreshing!

singingsoul1

I enjoyed your story. The greatest gift we can give is to listen but also to learn, Thank you and blessings