Every Tuesday, I take a nice long walk to Marisol's house. I could sleep in a little more and take the bus instead if I really wanted to. But there's just something about a little fresh air, exercise, and..
the blessing of podcasts thanks to my handy dandy iPod.
I listen to three different churches mostly. Occasionally, I like to tune in to a friend in the northeast, but lately, it's mostly been my Flatirons (Colorado), some Mosaic (LA) and the church that my parents go to in Texas.
This morning's walk consisted of a sermon from Flatirons back in 2011. At the end, the pastor told a story about three young women (ages 23 and 24) who went to Africa to help with an orphanage one summer. At the end of their time, one of the girls decided to stay. While she still had college, while she had no money, she took a leap of faith and stayed to make sure that the conditions for these children improved.
Pause. I used to admire a couple of people, but my outlook has changed.
For instance, I used to admire James Dean, that rebel who was a true star in three movies before he died in a car accident at 24 years of age. I used to really admire Michaelangelo, especially after seeing the David in Florence. He was around 24 or 25 (I think) when he created this sculpture out of which many thought was a piece of useless marble.
And while they did great things, and they are things that have left a legacy, or some sort of claim to fame, these two missed the point. Dean was reckless, and selfish. I read a biography about him and realized that he never really taught others his gifts. He just kept hoarding his talents, and constantly looked for ways to improve them.
Young Michaelangelo also missed the point. The other day, Marisol and I realized that David is not the David from the Bible (ahem.. being Jewish you would expect his.. ahem.. to be.. ahem..). We also discovered that Michaelangelo's Sistine Chapel includes references to the Greek goddess Delphi. He was mixing humanism with Christianity, which simply does not align no matter which way you look at it.
I found that I do admire a young woman named Vittoria Colonna, who quite possibly influenced Michaelangelo with the truth of depending on Christ alone for our strength*. Many believe that because of her influence, Michaelangelo then made his own face on the Nicodemus/Joseph of Arimathea sculpture in the Florentine Pietá.
I admire these young women mentioned earlier, who did all they could to make a difference in the world by serving children who have no home.
I admire the young woman of 21 years, who I just met today, that has left her home and comfortable job in Jujuy, to be a missionary in Córdoba.
They get it. They get that we aren't on this earth to make the most of our own lives, for me and me alone. We are called to love God and to love others. Seeing young(er) people do that ought to be enough to get all of us off our keester and get moving!
love and chau!
*Humanism stresses that man is capable of all on his own.
I have been reading Francis Schaeffer's How Should We Then Live in case you're wondering where this knowledge about Michaelangelo comes from!