One day a man went to the zoo to visit the elephants. He saw one of the attendants sitting in the corner with his head down and he was crying.
The visitor asked one of the other attendants why the man was crying. He said it was because one of the elephants had died. The visitor was touched and said: “I assume he must have been very fond of that elephant.”
“No,” said the attendant, “It’s not that at all. What he’s crying about is that he’s the one who has to dig the grave!” Sometimes we make false assumptions about things, don’t we?
It has been said that 1/3 of the people who are alive today spend their whole lives denying reality. “There’s an elephant standing in your living room and nobody wants to talk about it!” We’ll walk around the beast, we’ll feed it, but we won’t talk about it. We’ll talk about anything and everything, but not the real issues.
“Did you know there’s a big storm coming?”….”I’ve totally had it with these politicians.” We’ll talk about all this stuff, but we won’t talk about the elephant in the living room. We won’t talk about all the anger we’re feeling inside. We won’t talk about our addiction to booze or work or sports.
We don’t talk about the family matters that really count. We try to be Peace-Keepers and not Peace-Makers. We want Peace at home at any price. But recall what Jesus said: “Blessed are the peace-makers,” not “Blessed are the peace-keepers.”
They say that 1/3 of the people living today are having a Conversion Experience in their life. Reality has finally hit them and knocked a whole new way of seeing life and living life into them. These people are feeling a re-birth, no matter their age. A God Tap
They are grappling with life as it is, not as they want it to be. They feel an inner power and a surge of energy. They finally have been wakened and are getting their act together. They remark: “My God, look, there’s an elephant in our house. Let’s get that creature out of here!”
Finally, they say that 1/3 of the people living today are into the Joy of Living. They might not have a lot of money. In fact, most of them have gotten beyond the worries that money brings. But they do have an inner peace and harmony. When good things happen in their life, they put it in perspective and they can understand where God is leading them. A God Provide
If they want to see an elephant, they go to the zoo and not their living room. Life is real. Life is precious. They are running from nothing. They share everything. They and God are in control of their lives. No matter the problem or the issue, it is talked about and resolved. No games are played, no “Read my mind”.
Where are you on your life’s journey? At denial and working overtime to feed the elephant in your living room? Are you trying to be a Peace-Keeper?
Are you at a Conversion Point? Reality has hit you, and as scary as it is, you like what you’re feeling.
Are you into the Joy of Living? You’re not worried about what you possess, because you know you have it all – a deep inner peace and the love of Jesus that is always with you.
To me, this is what Jesus’ parable today is all about (Luke 15:1-32).
DENIAL: This is where the elder brother is at. He was getting 2/3 of the father’s property and he wasn’t happy with that. His younger brother came back home alive, but not to him. As far as he was concerned, he was dead. He wouldn’t go into the house. He didn’t want to see reality – the elephant or his brother.
THE CONVERSION EXPERIENCE: Reality has hit the Prodigal Son. It sure does when you are eating with pigs – Real Pigs! What does he do? SURRENDER! The key moment. The key word in all of life – SURRENDER! “I will go to my father and say”……..what every life worth living has had to come to say and do – SURRENDER! Every true saint has had to do this. I was worried about something more than my recent open heart surgery. I was worried about confessing my sins and knowing that I really meant that I was sorry – SURRENDER!
THE JOY OF LIVING: The father in the Parable is so often seen as God our Father. Why? Because of the way God loves – Unconditionally. He accepts the way life is on earth and still can be a real lover. The father has two sons, both very different, both make lots of mistakes. They’re obstinate, bull-headed and love the good-life. He still loves them both with no strings attached. Wow! That’s the kind of lover I want to be. I want to possess the Joy of Living that God the Father possesses.
Again, where are you in your life’s journey? Where do you want to be? Where do you need to be? The greatest happiness in life is knowing that we are loved for ourselves, or rather, in spite of ourselves.