Cool, But Not In a Cool Way

Some say that times were simpler back in the day. Some say that technology has made everything easier since then. As far as it matters, I say things are definitely different, but with regard to simpler or easier, there is still struggle for every human and still suffering in the world. The hope, it seems, is that each case of suffering and every struggle might still have the same root solution even if it does not have the same face on the problem.

Let’s talk about snowflakes. It seems like a catch phrase to label those growing up today with this term. It says more, however, about the person using the phrase than it does about the generation they are describing. When I see twenty somethings parading in the streets protesting this or that, I do question their motives, but at the same time, I think about older people who boycott a business because someone did not say, “Merry Christmas” and instead said, “Happy Holidays”. We are all snowflakes in some area of our lives.

War. As I was walking through an Atlanta airport recently, I heard a recorded message from the mayor of the city welcoming all the members of the armed forces who served and who are serving. War makes you tough. War makes you revered by most in the country today. I imagine that it is a cultural response to how poorly the nation treated their own when they came back from the Vietnam War. The pendulum has swung the other way. One day I hope there is a recorded loop from some mayor who welcomes peace activists to their fine city, but I will settle for the day when it is silent. We all are both warriors and people who want peace at times.

So there you have it. Warriors and Snowflakes. Two extremes. I was neither when I grew up. My only problem was to what extent if any, I was considered “cool”. For the record, I was never even close to being cool. To my credit, I was aware of that fact. What I did was notice, but not emulate, were the other kids that were cool.  They fascinated me. Then I went home and grew up, did my homework, and believe it or not, talked to my family. In between all of that, I played a little basketball. It was cool, though I was not “cool”.

Now I am grown and have a wife and kids. Some of my family have passed and some I still get to enjoy. I hang around and speak to teens and twenty somethings. I speak with those that have been to war or have been asked to prepare for war.  We do not speak about a lot of issues or past horrors. What we do speak about is how they are doing. How their kids are doing. What was school or work like that day. If it comes up, we might ask ourselves how God feels and what He wants for us, but for the most part, we are content to be with each other without inviting our egos. We are alright.

I have often wondered if God ever learned English or if He decided it was not worth the effort. I am certain he can convey what he wants to be known without a particular language. But if there was something to be said, it might be, “You have and will make mistakes. You have and will be loved. You have been and will be alright. Help others to understand that”.

Life is serious. Just not serious enough to weigh yourself down with living the notion of what you might think is “cool”.


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