by Ken Rolheiser
Do you realize your life while you live it

Every morning in Africa, a Gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning a Lion wakes up. It knows it must outrun the slowest gazelle or it will starve to death. It doesn't matter whether you are a lion or a gazelle. When the sun comes up, you'd better be running.

The lives of the lion and the gazelle do not sound like ordinary times. The life of the Christian is never just ordinary either.

Jennifer Anniston shares this quote: I love that feeling of being in love, the effect of having butterflies when you wake up in the morning. That is special.

In Louis Armstrong’s song “What a Wonderful World” we hear:
I see trees of green,
red roses too.
I see them bloom,
for me and you.
And I think to myself,
what a wonderful world.

The colors of the rainbow,
So pretty in the sky.
Are also on the faces,
Of people going by,
I see friends shaking hands.
Saying, "How do you do?"
They're really saying,
"I love you".

Yes, I think to myself,
What a wonderful world.

God tells us through Jeremiah I, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you Prophet to the nations.” That should give us butterflies if we think about it. Later we hear: “Tell the people what I command you” (Exodus 7:2 – He tells us elsewhere as well).

So God has chosen us and commanded us to speak in his name.

“Oh God, from my youth you have taught me,
And I still proclaim your wondrous deeds” (Psalm 71:17).

In Jennifer Lopez’s “Let's Get Loud" lyrics we hear an urgency about living our lives and fulfilling them:
If you wanna live your life
Live it all the way and don't you waste it

Dance don't ever stop, whatever rhythm
Every minute, every day

[then in the chorus]
Let's get loud, let's get loud
Ain't nobody gotta tell you
What you gotta do.

Armstrong would say, “Oh yeah”.

Well, maybe we can do without Lopez’s gyrations and the loudness, but the challenge is there:
If you wanna live your life
Live it all the way and don't you waste it…

[It] Can be so very sweet you gotta taste it
You gotta do it…
You gotta mean what you say.

Looking back over 35 years of my teaching career I sometimes realized what I was doing, and it was awesome. Teaching poetry, Wordsworth’s philosophy, Intellectuals like Eliot and Thomas… Then there was Thornton Wilder who made sense of it all, our ordinary everyday lives in Our Town.

The inspiration of meeting over 2,000 grade twelve students in my career has got to be a plus. Just like with the teachers, you get the good, the bad and the fantastic.

I am reminded of a scene in John 6:22 where Jesus goes for a walk on the Sea of Galilee. It seems almost out of character that Jesus steps out of natural time, in a sense. I sometimes imagine that He was looking for us out there. Thinking of us.

God is Love. Love is patient; love is kind; love never fades. Faith and Hope and Love abide, but the greatest of these is LOVE.

(570 words)